A small study conducted by a team of doctors at Delhi’s Lok Nayak Hospital has revealed that most of the new cases of Covid that were analysed were caused by a more transmissible Omicron sub-variant.
The severity of the disease among the patients infected with the sub-variant, however, was lesser.
Dr Suresh Kumar, medical director, Lok Nayak Hospital, told The Indian Express Wednesday that the doctors conducted a study on the variant infecting people at present and found that the BA 2.75 sub-variant of Omicron was predominant. Samples were collected from 90 patients.
“A majority of them were infected by the BA 2.75 sub-variant. The transmission of disease because of this variant is faster and it can overcome immune response, our study has shown. The severity of disease owing to the variant is lesser than in other variants and patients are recovering within 5-7 days. Our observations, so far, show that complications in these patients are also fewer. The sample size is small and a more detailed one will be required to get further details of the impact,” Kumar said.
Lok Nayak Hospital is the state government’s largest hospital, and was the first one to start admitting Covid patients at the beginning of the pandemic. Gradually, at the peak of the pandemic, it was turned into a Covid-only hospital.
Covid cases in the city have been on the rise for the past two weeks, with 2,495 cases and seven deaths as per Tuesday’s health bulletin. The positivity rate was 15.41 per cent.
According to Kumar, Covid patients in the hospital are mostly those who have chronic diseases such as cancer or tuberculosis, or those with severe diabetes. In most cases, a Covid finding is incidental. Some pregnant women who get admitted and give birth, he said, are also testing positive and in such cases the newborns are not allowed closed interaction with the mother till they test negative.
The hospital also has two children under the age of 14 among the admitted patients.
“These children have not been vaccinated. We have seen that vaccinated people who do not suffer from chronic diseases are less likely to be admitted to hospital as the severity of disease among them is lower,” Kumar said.