United Nations/Geneva: Sounding an alert over the deadly Delta variant of coronavirus, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has urged fully vaccinated people across the world to continue wearing face masks, follow social distancing and other safety protocols to prevent the virus from spreading across the world. The Delta variant, first identified in India and the cause of the country’s horrific second wave of pandemic, is “the most transmissible of the variants identified so far”, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Friday.Also Read - Monkeypox Not A Global Health Emergency Yet: WHO
The Delta variant has been reported in at least 92 countries around the world and is spreading rapidly among unvaccinated populations. Also Read - COVID Symptoms? Follow These Measures Immediately For Quick Recovery And Help Others From Getting Infected
At a press briefing on Friday, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted with concern that as some countries ease public health and social measures, we are starting to see increases in transmission around the world. Also Read - Monkeypox Outbreak Declared As Pandemic: World Health Network Urges WHO To Take Urgent Action
However, Mariangela Simao, WHO’s assistant director-general for access to medicines and health products, noted that those vaccinated cannot feel safe just because they had the two doses.
‘Vaccine Alone Won’t Stop Transmission’
“Vaccine alone won’t stop community transmission. People need to continue to use masks consistently, be in ventilated spaces, hand hygiene… the physical distance, avoid crowding. This still continues to be extremely important, even if you’re vaccinated when you have a community transmission ongoing,” she said during the WHO briefing from the Geneva headquarters, according to CNBC.
The United States had earlier this year lifted the mandatory face mask rule for people who are fully vaccinated against coronavirus. Israel, New Zealand, Bhutan and China have also removed the rule.
“The global situation is incredibly fragile,” said Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s technical lead on COVID-19. “The Delta variant, the virus, will continue to evolve,” Van Kerkhove said.
“Right now our public health and social measures work, our vaccines work, our diagnostics work, our therapeutics work. But there may be a time where this virus evolves and these countermeasures don’t,” she said.