Outbreaks of the Delta variant have prompted China and Australia to impose tighter Covid-19 restrictions as WHO urged the world to quickly contain the mutation before it turns into something more deadly .
The most severe wave of coronavirus infections in China in months spread to two other regions on Saturday: Fujian province and the megalopolis of Chongqing.
More than 200 cases have been linked to a Delta cluster in Nanjing city where nine cleaners from an international airport have tested positive, with the outbreak covering Beijing, Chongqing and five provinces on Saturday.
The country where the disease first emerged has rushed to prevent the highly transmissible strain from taking root by putting more than a million people in lockdown and reinstating mass testing campaigns.
In Australia, where only around 14% of the population is vaccinated, the third largest city of Brisbane and other parts of the state of Queensland were due to enter an instant Covid-19 lockdown on Saturday as a group of the Delta variant was bubbling in six new cases.
“The only way to beat the Delta strain is to act fast, to be quick and to be strong,” Queensland Deputy Premier Steven Miles said while informing millions of people they would be. under three days of strict stay-at-home orders. “The war has changed.
Globally, coronavirus infections are on the rise again, with the World Health Organization announcing an average increase of 80% over the past four weeks in five of the health agency’s six regions, a largely fueled jump by the Delta variant which has now reached 132 countries and territories.
“Delta is a warning: it is a warning that the virus is evolving but it is also a call to action that we must pass now before more dangerous variants appear,” said the emergency director of the ‘WHO, Michael Ryan.
He stressed that the “game plan” still works, namely physical distancing, wearing masks, hand hygiene and vaccination.
The vaccine race to triumph over the variants appeared to be taking a hit when the US Centers for Disease Control released an analysis that found that fully immune people with so-called breakthrough infections of the Delta variant can spread the disease, too. easily than unvaccinated people. While jabs remain effective against serious illness and death, the US government agency said in a leaked CDC internal document that “the war has changed” in the wake of Delta.