Could 21, 2021 — The COVID-19 vaccines approved to be used in the US and Europe supply safety in opposition to the 4 predominant coronavirus variants identified to exist, a World Well being Group official says.
“All COVID-19 virus variants which have emerged thus far do reply to the out there authorised vaccines,” WHO European Regional Director Hans Kluge mentioned Thursday at a information convention.
Kluge mentioned the B.1.617 variant now killing hundreds of individuals every day in India, the place it was first detected, is of particular concern.
That variant has unfold to all six WHO areas and has been detected in 26 of the 53 nations within the WHO European area. Most instances are linked to worldwide journey, he mentioned.
“It is ready to unfold quickly and displace the B.1.1.7 variant that has turn out to be the dominant lineage in Europe,” he mentioned.
Kluge emphasised that whereas many individuals haven’t been vaccinated but, all variants will be managed with public well being and security measures, corresponding to masks and social distancing.
“In the meanwhile, we are able to say that each one the 4 variants do reply to the vaccines made out there, as of at present,” he mentioned. “However one of the best ways to counteract [spread] is to hurry up the vaccination roll-out.”
The opposite variants are those first detected in Brazil (P.1) and South Africa (B.1.351).
Luge mentioned the vaccination program is bringing down COVID numbers within the WHO European area, with case counts reducing 60% in a month. However he warned in opposition to letting our guard down.
“This progress is fragile. We’ve got been right here earlier than. Allow us to not make the identical errors that had been made this time final 12 months that resulted in a resurgence of COVID-19,” he mentioned.
Luge mentioned nations ought to “get rid of or rethink” worldwide journey. However the European Union and the UK have just lately relaxed steerage for worldwide journey.
“Vaccines often is the gentle on the finish of the tunnel, however we should not be blinded by that gentle,” he mentioned.