London, June 3 (MNN) The weekly updates on new cases of coronavirus variants of concern and variants under investigation in the UK indicated that Delta variant is now dominant in the country.
As per the Public Health England (PHE) weekly COVID-19 variant cases data, cases of Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant had risen by 5,472 since last week to 12,431 in the United Kingdom.
Although there is some regional variation, PHE experts believe that Delta has overtaken Alpha (VOC-20DEC-01) as the dominant SARS-CoV-2 variant in the UK.
Early evidence suggests there may be an increased risk of hospitalisation for Delta compared to Alpha variant although more data is needed to have more confidence in that finding, the PHE said.
This week, 278 people with the Delta variant attended A&E (accident and emergency), resulting in 94 people getting admitted to hospital overnight.
Last week, 201 people attended A&E, with 43 admissions. Once again, the majority of these had not been vaccinated.
The PHE said most affected areas remain Bolton, where cases have risen by 795 to 2,149, and Blackburn with Darwen which has seen 368 new cases, bringing it to 724 in total.
Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive, UK Health Security Agency, said: “With this variant now dominant across the UK, it remains vital that we all continue to exercise as much caution as possible. The way to tackle variants is to tackle the transmission of COVID-19 as a whole. Work from home where you can, and practice ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times.”
PHE has also published a breakdown of outbreaks and clusters of variants in schools and other settings.
Outbreaks and clusters in primary and secondary schools are at low levels but we have seen a slight increase over recent weeks, in line with higher levels of the Delta variant circulating in the community.