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Third Covid wave worse, as new variant more aggressive, warns expert


Thailand’s third wave of Covid-19 infections is more dangerous because the new strain of the virus can live in the body longer than the previous strain, warned Asst Prof Opass Putcharoen, chief of Chulalongkorn Hospital’s Centre of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

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In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Opass cited studies on more than 200 Covid-19 patients which showed that the new version of the virus can now live in the human body for more than 10 days compared to the previous strain which could only survive for seven days.

He said the number of young people hit by pneumonitis has also risen compared to the last wave, adding that the latest version of the virus is likely to spread easier and faster than before.

“This time, patients develop severe symptoms less than a week after being infected, so doctors must be ready to treat them as soon as possible,” he said.

He also predicted that hospital ICUs will start filling up with Covid-19 patients from this week, adding that the situation now is similar to the spread of the coronavirus B117 variant in the UK.

“Hence, measures to contain transmissions in communities and vaccine rollout are necessary to tackle the third wave,” he added.

Published : April 20, 2021

By : The Nation