Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Wednesday said 21 cases of Delta Plus COVID-19 variant have been found in 7 districts of the state. However, no death has taken place due to the variant, he said.
He noted that the variant reduces antibodies and said the administration have begun isolating such cases and taking all details like travel history, contact tracing and if they have been vaccinated.
"21 cases of Delta Plus variant have been found in 7 districts of the state. This variant reduces antibodies in the body. We are isolating such cases and taking all details like travel history, contact tracing & if they have been vaccinated," Tope said.
"We've decided to send the samples for Genomic sequence study. No deaths caused due to Delta Plus variant & some have recovered from this variant. Symptoms & treatment are the same for this variant. No children infected with this variant," he added.
Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry wrote to the chief secretaries of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala and requested them to take up immediate containment measures as cases of Delta Plus variant were found in these three states.
Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, in the letter, requested the chief secretaries to take up immediate containment measures in these districts and clusters including preventing crowds and intermingling of people, widespread testing, prompt tracing as well as vaccine coverage on a priority basis.
Bhushan said it is intimated that Delta Plus variant has been found in Bhopal and Shivpuri districts of Madhya Pradesh, Ratnagiri and Jalgaon districts of Maharashtra, and Palakkad and Pathanamthitta districts of Kerala.
"The Public Health Response, in this case, while broadly remaining the same, has to become more focused and stringent. Thus, you are requested to take up immediate containment measures in these districts and clusters including preventing crowds and intermingling of people, widespread testing, prompt tracing as well as vaccine coverage on a priority basis," read the letter.
"You are requested to ensure that adequate samples of positive persons are sent to the designated laboratories of INSACOG promptly so that the clinical epidemiological correlations can be made," it said.
The Union Health Ministry on Wednesday informed that the Delta Plus variant was observed sporadically in Maharashtra, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh with around 40 cases identified so far, and added that there is no significant increase in its prevalence.
These States have been advised for strengthening surveillance and appropriate public health measures.
"As of now among the samples sequenced (45000+) in India, this variant has been observed sporadically in Maharashtra, Kerala & Madhya Pradesh, with around 40 cases identified so far and no significant increase in prevalence," Union Health Ministry said in a statement.
(With PTI input)