There is currently an outbreak in Germany, France and Spain, with scientists ringing a resounding "bell" for immediate action.
This they report, including, in their extensive coverage by the Financial Times, speaks clearly of a "threat" to Europe's progress in halting the pandemic in recent months, after a year and a half of hard fighting.
To prevail in Europe
Citing data from the "monitoring" system and analyzing the course of the virus it uses, The British newspaper reports that although this variant (also known as "Indian"), at the moment it is just part of the overall pandemic "frame" in the Old Epirus, is constantly gaining ground as it now corresponds to 96% of the new chain of cases in Portugal. also, get over it 20% in Italy and about 16% in Italy.
The little one, but an ever-increasing case curve, has sounded the alarm about a possible "brake" on the progress made by Europe in the last two months, which has managed to bring the rates of new infections and deaths to the lowest level since last autumn.
"We are on the way to crashing the virus and the pandemic and under no circumstances should we allow Delta to take the upper hand.", it was, in fact the characteristic aversion of the French Minister of Health, Olivier Veran, last Tuesday.
In Portugal, the spread of the variant has been located mainly in the wider area of the capital Lisbon, where they were recorded last week over the 60% of the total cases of the country. Something that led to the imposition of additional restrictions, as "non-essential" travel to and from the city was banned.
Eyes focused on Britain
The attention of scientists from all over Europe, is, however, aimed mainly at Britain, where cases have tripled in the last month, with "Delta" concerning the 98% of new incidents, report the FT. In fact, after the presentation of official government data, which indicated that the risk of hospitalization is 2,2 times larger than the "Alpha" variant, London has suspended the total lifting of restrictive measures for a month.
"Decisions in the UK to open a business are like a laboratory (SS. to draw conclusions) for us in the rest of Europe ", reports in the British media Bruno Lina, virologist from the city of Lyon and adviser to the French government on the pandemic. In each case, as highlighted in the post, whether Delta outbreaks will lead to wider deterioration in Europe will be judged by two factors: by how many citizens will get the full vaccination, but also by their behavior during the period of lifting the measures in social life and work environment.
The only solution is vaccination
British government investigations emphasize the importance of completing the vaccination campaign as soon as possible. According to data from the Public Health Agency of England, the first dose of vaccines is generally less effective against Delta, compared to previous variants. Both doses increase, in fact, protection against symptomatic disease from said mutation, from 33% in the 81%. However, while in Britain approximately 46% of the population is fully vaccinated, rates in other European countries are clearly lower, between 20% and 30%.
"If we keep a good pace in vaccinations and some protection measures, like the mask indoors, we can still suppress the circulation of the virus in the summer ", adds the French virologist.
"Delta" will displace the other variants, we must keep this in mind. However, this does not necessarily mean that we will be led to a new epidemic wave ", he adds. However, with regard to Britain, scientific adviser to the government, reported yesterday Saturday 19/6 to the BBC that “a new wave in the country, has clearly started ", expressing, however, the optimistic view that due to vaccinations, this is not currently reflected in the hospitalization indicators. Highlighting, briefly, in turn the importance of advancing vaccination campaigns as quickly as possible.
The "hidden" spread
As reported by the FT, some scientists fear that the "Delta" variant has already spread more than it seems, but this has not been identified, as well as the genomic sequence data required to identify variants in Europe, are less than required.
particularly, while in Britain the number is above 500.000 genomes, other major countries of the Old Continent, it is far behind: 130.000 have been followed in Germany, 47.000 in France and 34.000 in Spain.
"It's expensive, it is time consuming and has been neglected ", explains to FT an expert from the University of Geneva. The post highlights, however, the example of Denmark, which has detected a large number of cases and, However, has identified a few incidents of "Delta", although the variant reached the country, almost simultaneously with Britain.
This could be explained, according to scientists, from various parameters: demographic data, population movements (including arrivals from booming countries such as India), but also the living conditions in the communities identified. From his side, Cambridge Institute expert says differences between countries over Delta spread, remain largely "a mystery".
We still have a long way to go
In each case, is a common belief among scientists that the "Delta" variant, no matter where it will come from, in the end it will prevail ". The key, they say, is clearly the increase in fully vaccinated, alongside, with the strongest possible restriction on the transmission of the virus.
"We have to keep the message clear: All this is not over ", is the aversion of the French virologist, Bruno Lina, with which the post ends.