New Delhi: Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Tuesday said that the Delta Plus variant of COVID-19 has been found in 10 countries including India. During a press conference, the health secretary said that over 22 cases of Delta Plus have been detected in India besides the regular Delta variant. “In India, 16 of the 22 cases of Delta Plus variant have been found in Ratnagiri and Jalgaon (Maharashtra) and some cases in Kerala and Madhya Pradesh,” Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said.Also Read - Why Is India Witnessing Sudden Surge in COVID Cases? Omicron Sub-variants Main Reason, Say Experts

The Union Health Ministry has also issued an advisory for Maharashtra, Kerala, and Madhya Pradesh on Delta Plus Variant, currently a Variant of Concern (VOC), to take up immediate containment measures, enhanced testing, tracking and vaccination in districts and clusters where the Delta Plus variant is found. Also Read - Implement COVID Measures If Required: Centre Urges States, UTs Not to Lower Guard Amid Upsurge in Cases

The government also asked the states to take adequate samples of positive persons and sent them to designated laboratories of INSACOG so that the clinical epidemiological correlations can be made. Also Read - Tamil Nadu Replaces Gujarat in Food Security Index; Bengal, Madhya Pradesh Share Fifth Spot

What Health Ministry Has Advised States That Have Reported Delta Plus Variant

  • Based on the recent findings of INSACOG, the Union Health Ministry has alerted and advised Maharashtra, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh regarding the Delta Plus variant of COVID19 being found in some districts in these States.
  • Union Health Secretary has communicated to these three states this variant has been found in genome sequenced samples from Ratnagiri and Jalgaon Districts of Maharashtra; Palakkad and Pathanamthitta Districts of Kerala; and Bhopal and Shivpuri Districts of Madhya Pradesh.
  • The Union Health Ministry has advised Maharashtra, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh that the Public Health Response measures, while broadly remaining the same as have been implemented by them earlier, have to become more focused and effective.
  • States Chief Secretaries have been advised to take up immediate containment measures in the dists & clusters (as identified by INSACOG) incl preventing crowds & intermingling of people, widespread testing, prompt tracing as well as vaccine coverage on a priority basis.
  • They were also advised to ensure that adequate samples of positive persons are promptly sent to the designated laboratories of INSACOG so that clinical epidemiological correlations can be made for further guidance to be provided to States.