Delta strain spread reaches 95% in Latvia

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The spread of the Covid-19 Delta strain in Latvia has reached 95% of all cases, head of the National Reference Laboratory, Sergejs Ņikišins, said at the government meeting Tuesday, August 10.

In early July, the Delta type was detected in about 18% of samples, while in mid-July the spread reached 79%. In the last week, the Delta variant was detected in 95.3% out of 128 tested samples.

Meanwhile, the prevalence of the Alpha virus strain continues to decrease in Latvia.

Health Minister Daniels Pavļuts said at a press conference following the government meeting: "We can find that in recent weeks the incidence of the Covid-19 Delta has been spreading, there is an increase in morbidity. But overall, the situation in Latvia is relatively good and stable. (…) In Latvia, at least for the time being, we have succeeded in restricting the spread of the Covid-19 Delta, because we have maintained caution, we have maintained a series of safety measures that have been effective and have prevented the morbidity from growing more rapidly."

According Ņikišins, testing frequency in Latvia is stable, despite changing some of the test conditions from August. On average, 8,000 tests are carried out on a working day and 6,000 on a Saturday or Sunday. Approximately 1,000 antigen tests are carried out on the day prior to the visit of an event or service.

Latvia's experience is similar to that of many other countries in which the more easily transmissable Delta variant fairly quickly overtakes the Alpha variant. More on the different strains of Covid is availabe at the World Health Organization

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