WHO chief scientist Dr Soumya Swaminathan warns about current COVID trends across the globe

Dr Soumya Swaminathan has raised concern over increasing positive cases and deaths in Europe, dominant delta variants and a spike in death rates.

Delta variant of the virus accounts for 99.7% of the viral subtypes over the past two months, said World Health Organization Chief Scientist, Dr Soumya Swaminathan on Wednesday. Swaminathan took to Twitter to suggest that concerning trends in Europe requires the world to step up their vaccination coverage.

She said that number of cases has increased globally in European, Western Pacific and American regions. But deaths have soared at around 50,000 a week, she posted. Dr Swaminathan reiterated the need to continue social distancing, wearing masks in public places, and following Covid-19 protocol.

Her warnings come amidst Indian worrying about the onset of the third wave of covid. During the last big spike in the number of infections, the world has seen the fallible condition of the Indian medical system and hospitals. To date, only around 26% of Indians have completed the double-dose vaccination.

The global covid trends: Dominant Delta variants

Though Delta variant accounts for 99.7% viral subtypes, in South America, some Mu and Lambda are still circulating, Dr Soumya Swaminathan said. She wrote, “#Delta variant accounts for 99.7% of viral subtypes in @GISAID over past 60 days. In South America, there is still some Mu and Lambda circulating. #AY4.2 sublineage may have some transmission advantage & needs watching.”

The global covid trends: Death rates

Most deaths are reported amongst the unvaccinated population in the country. Dr Soumya said, “Global increase in cases – in 3 @WHO regions. Deaths have plateaued at ~ 50,000 a week. Most deaths are unvaccinated in all countries. We need to use the vaccine supplies for primary courses and save lives.”

The situation in Europe is concerning

The concerning spike in cases has left the world jittery. The 8% increase in the number of cases and 5% increase in the number of covid deaths in Europe has raised eyebrows over the world. Dr Soumya Swaminathan wrote, “Very concerning trends from Europe. 8% increase in cases and 5% increase in deaths. We need to step up vaccination campaigns & ensure high coverage first among the elderly & vulnerable. Also, continue masking, don’t crowd in unventilated places & stay home if sick.”

WHO had earlier warned Europe that the continent might witness a half and more million covid deaths by next year February. World Health Organisation has blamed the low vaccination records in the recent months among the European countries for the soar.

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