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The Indian variant of Covid-19 could be the dominant strain of the virus in the United States in just one week, according to disturbing new data.
The highly-transmissible strain - known as B.1.617.2 or 'Delta' - now makes up about 10 percent of US cases, up from just one percent less than a month ago, Outbreak.info claims.
'When will B.1.617.2 (Delta) be the dominant variant in the US? Could be next week (or next 2 weeks) based on trends in our testing data & sequences available,' researcher Alexandre Bolze wrote on Twitter Thursday.
The strain, which was first detected in India, has wreaked havoc in the United Kingdom, where it now makes up 91 percent of all new cases.
It has caused Covid cases in that country to surge by 109 percent in a single week, with the government now considering extending lockdown restrictions by another month. The UK is headed for a third Covid wave and, at the current rate, could have 80,000 new cases a day by mid-July.
Stoking fears, a study by Public Health England shows 29 percent of the 42 people who have died after catching the new strain had received both of their Covid vaccinations.
A similar surge in US cases could be disastrous, particularly given that many are confident the pandemic is almost over, thanks to falling case numbers and widespread vaccinations.
Dr. Anthony Fauci has warned Americans against complacency, and pleaded with the public to get vaccinated.
Public Health England data puts vaccine effectiveness against the Delta variant at just 33 per cent after one dose. However, after two doses, this rises considerably to 81 per cent. Those who died in the UK after being fully vaccinated were likely to have been elderly and have suffered complications.
The Indian variant of Covid-19 could be the dominant strain of the virus in the United States in just one week, according to disturbing new data
The highly-transmissible strain - known as B.1.617.2 or 'Delta' - now makes up about 10 percent of US cases, up from just one percent less than a month ago, Outbreak.info claims
Dr. Anthony Fauci has warned Americans against complacency, and pleased with the public to get vaccinated. As of Sunday, less than 50 percent of the country are full vaccinated against Covid-19
Meanwhile, additional data from Outbreak.info shows that cases of the B.1.1.7 variant - known as 'Alpha' or the UK variant - are falling in the United States.
In April, that variant made up around 66 percent of all cases on average. This week, Alpha only accounted for 44 percent of cases.
It comes as Covid-cases continue to plateau in the US. On Saturday, 8,207 Americans tested positive to Covid. An additional 261 people succumbed to the virus, a decrease on the seven-day average of 379.
Research shows that the Covid vaccines are largely effective against the Delta strain, but only after a second dose of the Pfizer and Moderna jabs.
Last week, Dr. Fauci urged reluctant Americans to get their shots, saying at the time that the Delta variant accounted for around six percent of cases.
'If you had your first dose, make sure you get that second dose - and for those who have been nor vaccinated yet, please get vaccinated.'
'When talking to their health authorities, the transmission is peaking in the younger group of 12- to 20-year-olds - mainly that group that we're concerned about here, about making sure they get vaccinated.'
Fauci added that several studies have found there is poor protection against the Delta variant with one dose, but strong protection with two.
As of Sunday, just 43 percent of Americans are fully vaccinated. 64 percent of American adults have received their first dose.
President Joe Biden has pushed to have 70 percent of US adults vaccinated by July 4, but there are fears he may miss that target with around one-third of all Americans saying they have no interest in having the jab.
Last week, Dr. Fauci urged reluctant Americans to get their shots, saying at the time that the Delta variant accounted for around six percent of cases