Novel FLiRT Variant Poses Concerns Amidst COVID-19 Respite, Warns Health Expert

United States: The restrictions imposed due to COVID-19 has removed, however the threat linked to COVID-19 still remains in the air as new variants have been emerging with new mutations. Recently, the concerns hiked due to emergence of new variant which could possibly result in another pandemic, linked to SARS-CoV-2. 

“We continuously observe the emergence of novel mutations, denoted as the FLiRT strains,” said Dr. David Bronstein, a proficient infectious diseases specialist affiliated with Kaiser Permanente in the Antelope Valley.

Bronstein divulged that these FLiRT iterations, negligible at the year’s inception, now command a staggering 28% of our COVID caseload. As the imminent summer excursion season looms, apprehensions mount concerning a potential resurgence of COVID.

Consequently, experts advocate for individuals yet to receive last autumn’s vaccine to contemplate availing themselves of it promptly.

“Procuring the vaccine presently appears prudent, particularly in light of imminent travel and the ascension of yet another proliferating subvariant,” Bronstein advised sagely. “Safeguarding oneself seems imperative.”

For individuals aged 65 and above, Bronstein prescribes the administration of a supplementary dose of the autumn vaccine. However, he underscores the distinction between COVID and influenza, emphasizing the elevated incidence of hospitalizations and fatalities attributable to COVID.

“The incidence of severe outcomes remains higher for COVID compared to influenza, underscoring the paramount importance of vaccination compliance,” Bronstein elucidated.

Reflecting upon the cumulative impact of infections and vaccinations, Bronstein expressed optimism regarding the potential mitigation of subsequent infections.

“It stands to reason that enhanced immunity conferred by previous infections and vaccinations should mitigate the severity of subsequent infections for the majority,” Bronstein opined.

Albeit the likelihood of a surge resulting from the FLiRT variant looms, experts are reassured that there exists no empirical basis to anticipate a heightened virulence relative to recent strains.

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