HYDERABAD: The AY 4.2 variant or Delta Plus, the new sub-variant of Covid-19 Delta variant which, according to experts, is more infectious and spreads faster, had found its way into Telangana in June itself. However, Director of Public Health Dr G Srinivasa Rao assures that there is no cause for concern.
“There is no need to panic as two cases of this variant were detected in June. After that no new cases of AY 4.2 variant were detected in the State,” he said. However, since June, the State has sent only 582 samples for genome sequencing in July, August and September as per the INSACOG. In June alone, 529 samples were sent to the Central labs for genome sequencing, indicating how under-sequenced the cases in the State are.
The Director of Public Health, however, assured that with fresh concerns rising, the State is striving to increase surveillance. “We have already increased the number of tests being conducted and increased surveillance as well. For vaccinations, the State has reduced the gap between doses and has also intensified it in all districts. The Centre has also given us a deadline to sequence 10% of all samples and the Health Department will ensure all labs comply with the direction,” he said.
He also urged the public not to ignore even the slightest of symptoms. “One may think that a flu or fever is due to the winter season, but ignoring them can lead to a much worse condition. So, it is important to get tested for slightest symptoms at the nearest testing facility,” he added.According to INSACOG, another sub-variant of Delta, AY 33 is the most prevalent variant in Telangana as 66% of all samples tested in September are of that lineage.