Accordingly, the B.1.617.2 COVID variant found for the first time in India will be referred to as ‘Delta’, while another variant (B.1.617.1) found in the country will be referred to as ‘Kappa’. Will be known, the WHO announced.
“Labels do not replace existing scientific names, which carry important scientific information and will continue to be used in research,” Dr Maria van Kerkhove, technical chief COVID-19 at WHO, said on Monday. He said that no country should be stigmatized for this. Detection and reporting of COVID types.
Under the new scheme, B.1.1.4, previously found in Britain, would be known as alpha, while B.1.351, previously identified in South Africa, would be beta. P.1, meanwhile, will be the first discovered variant gamma in Brazil.
When the 24 letters of the Greek alphabet have been exhausted, another such series will be announced, Van Kerkhove told Stat.
Plans to simplify the naming of variants had been underway for several months, led by the WHO’s Virus Evolution Working Group.
On May 12, the WHO stated in a tweet that it “does not identify viruses or variants with the names of the countries from which they are first reported. We refer to them by their scientific names and from all Request them to do the same for continuity,” it tweeted.
Following the suit, in a statement, the Indian government stated, “Several media reports have covered reports of WHO classifying B.1.617 as a global concern. Some of these reports have brought the B.1.617 version of Coronavirus ‘Indian’ Variants’. These media reports are without any basis, and are baseless.”