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Covid-19 Variant from India Confirmed in Uganda

Covid-19 Update
A Ugandan health officer on April 29, 2020 takes samples for testing the Covid-19 coronavirus from a truck driver at the Kenya-Uganda border at Malaba. [Photo/Courtesy]

Kenya’s neighboring country, Uganda, has confirmed a COVID-19 variant from India.

Uganda’s Health Ministry said the Indian variant is among five different strains of the coronavirus that have so far been detected in the country.

Others are Ugandan, Nigerian, South African, and UK strains.

Col Dr Henry Kyobe, the COVID-19 incident commander, told members of the press that the UK, South Africa, and India variants are more transmissible and mainly affect a younger age group in cases where they have been recorded.

Dr Kyobe, however, added that the variant causing more havoc in India is the UK variant.

“Variants of concern are those that change the epidemiology, transmission and effect on individuals. In that case, they might be more virulent and change from one age to the other. They might change in symptoms and in the worst-case scenario therapeutics and vaccines may not be able to respond to them, but we have not yet seen that,” he said.

Read: UK Bans Passengers From Tanzania, DRC To Control Spread Of New Covid Variant

The Ministry also took to Twitter to warn residents to be extra careful following the detection of the Indian variant in the country.

This includes following all the public health measures that break the chains of transmission.

“The deadly COVID-19 variant from India has been detected in #Uganda. Ensure you: Wear a mask when in public, Wash hands with clean water and soap or use a hand sanitizer, Practice physical distancing Syringe and Get vaccinated NOW,” the tweet reads.

India is reporting a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases and fatalities, raising alarm over the situation in the second-most populous country in the world.

At least 18 million cases and 205,000 deaths have so far been confirmed, with reports indicating that the situation has left hospitals, morgues and crematoriums overwhelmed.

Read Also: South African Covid Variant Now In Tanzania

On Thursday alone, 386,452 more cases were recorded, the biggest one-day increase on record for any country.

There were another 3,500 deaths, with Delhi recording its highest single-day toll of fatalities at almost 400.

On the other hand, Uganda has reported 40,734 cases and 334 deaths so far.

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Written by Wycliffe Nyamasege

Email news@kahawatungu.com

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