The third wave of Covid19 pandemic has officially hit Nigeria and the number of its early victims is already on the rise. The third wave known as Delta Variant was first identified in India in December 2020. Umuaka Times gathered that within months, the variant spread like wildfire to over 96 countries including Nigeria. From the data released by Nigeria’s Centre for Disease Control, Nigeria is seriously being ravaged by this coronavirus especially the Delta Variant which sometime last week, recorded 747 new cases, making it the highest daily record in the last six months.
From the table of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), last week, the figures stood at over 176,011 infections and the fatality toll also stood above 2,160. Health workers and government officials have expressed deep worries over the surge, especially now that Nigerians have relaxed almost all the Covid19 preventive measures. Even to wear face masks, people are reluctant towards it.
From the global index, the deadly Delta Variant is still the leading cause of covid19 related deaths since it gained grounds a couple of months ago around the world. In a particular day last week, India recorded 5000 deaths and many other countries are also recording such alarming figures. Some documents Umuaka Times came across last week “indicate that Delta is 40-60% more transmissible than Alpha and almost twice as transmissible as the original Wuhan strain of SARS-CoV-2. Furthermore, significantly more viral particles have been found in the airways of patients infected with the Delta variant. A Chinese study reported that viral loads in Delta infections were ~1,000 times higher than those in infections caused by other variants. In response this information, the World Health Organization (WHO) regards Delta as “the fastest and fittest” variant so far.”
Like other citizens of the world Akalites are also at risk in any part of the world they are because of some certain reasons. In Nigeria where the country largely depends on foreign aids to fight the pandemic, the rate of infections is expected to rise at least in three folds considering the lackadaisical attitude of Nigerians towards healthy living and the ongoing industrial action by resident doctors.
Both government officials and health workers have strongly recommended vaccination as the only way out but regrettably, a document Umuaka Times came across last week from Baltimore Sun, there were reports that “some fully vaccinated Marylanders are continuing to contract COVID-19, but only a small percentage have died or been hospitalized…Only 0.12% of those fully vaccinated — about 3,836 people in the state — later tested positive for the virus, the Maryland Department of Health reported.”
Locally, it is very simple for the Delta Variant to secure an accommodation in Umuaka. Daily, visitors from Lagos and other high risk areas in the country visit Umuaka without any form of checks. It is strongly believed that some Akalites at home may have contracted the deadly Delta infection without knowing it. The only way out still remains to maintain all the preventive rules against Covid19.
Another document Umuaka Times came across last week states that “Meanwhile, companies are already developing booster doses to improve efficacy against circulating variants. Pfizer plans to seek FDA authorization for its booster dose, which is expected to elicit stronger neutralization against the Delta variant. However, antibodies alone do not give the whole picture of immune protection. How other vaccine-elicited immune components, such as T cells and B cells, respond when challenged by the Delta variant is still relatively unclear, and conversation about whether booster doses are needed yet are ongoing.”