Delta sparks fears and fresh curbs
The Delta variant of the coronavirus is spreading rapidly in the US and now accounts for a fifth of recent Covid-19 cases, the head of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has said, as the variant continues to spread fear and trigger fresh curbs around the world.
Rochelle Walensky, CDC head, said on Wednesday the rapid growth in the Delta variant is being seen after it had accounted for just 3% of Covid-19 cases analysed several weeks ago.
The news in Europe was grim as well, with the highly transmissible variant showing the potential to account for 90% of new Covid-19 cases in the EU in the coming months, the bloc’s disease control agency said. “It is likely the Delta variant will circulate extensively during the summer, particularly among younger individuals not targeted for vaccination,” Andrea Ammon, director of the European CDC said, adding that “by the end of August, it will represent 90%” of new cases in the EU.
In Russia, authorities warned of an “explosive” spread of the Delta variant amid rapidly rising infections and deaths. “The situation has become explosive,” said Moscow’s mayor Sergei Sobyanin.
Fears over the Delta variant also forced authorities in Sydney to bring back curbs, while Wellington upgraded its alert level.
In England, meanwhile, officials have tracked 41 cases of the Delta Plus variant of Covid-19, an even more transmissible strain.
AZ, Pfizer jabs effective against Delta: Study
Covid-19 vaccines made by AstraZeneca and the Pfizer-BioNTech alliance remain broadly effective against Delta and Kappa variants, according to a scientific study. The study by Oxford University researchers, published in the journal Cell, investigated the ability of antibodies in the blood from people to neutralise the variants.
Morgan Stanley to bar unvaccinated employees
Morgan Stanley’s staff and clients won’t be allowed to enter the bank’s New York offices if they are not fully vaccinated, according to a source. Those who aren’t fully vaccinated will need to work remotely, the source said, adding the policy will come into effect on July 12.