We should not lull our vigilance. The fourth wave of the pandemic is very likely – said professor Marcin Drąg from the Department of Biological Chemistry and Bioimaging of the Wrocław University of Technology in the TVN24 program “Get up and weekend”. As he noted, in the next two or three months, a very contagious and dangerous Delta mutation may become a dominant mutation in Poland.
The virus B. 1.617.2, called Delta, is currently the most dangerous mutation of the coronavirus – said Professor Marcin Drąg. He added that it is “the most contagious and its symptoms are the most distressing.” He pointed out that the largest group of people infected with this mutation are children. “And we know the children are not vaccinated,” he pointed out. He argued that the available COVID-19 vaccines also protect against this mutation, although even vaccinated people can become infected with it. However, he added, these people tend to pass COVID-19 in this case “in a fairly gentle manner.”
When asked when a decision could be made at European level to vaccinate children younger than 12 years of age, he replied that “clinical trials could be completed in two to three months”. “We cannot rule out that it may happen faster or take a little longer,” he added. He stressed that “research in this area is very intensively conducted, we can expect decisions at any time”. – We should really hope that it will happen quite soon, looking at the fact that we want to start the school year from September already in the stationary mode – he pointed out.
“Fourth wave is very likely”
Professor Drąg pointed out that so far over 10 million people in Poland have been fully vaccinated, which means only about 30 percent of the population that can be vaccinated. He noted that the vaccination campaign in Poland has been going on for six months. – If we expect that we will vaccinate at this rate, it will take us another six months to reach the magical 60 percent, and the school year starts in less than three months. I think that the vaccination rate should accelerate, but the number of people willing to vaccinate should also increase dramatically – he argued.
In his opinion, “the fourth wave is very likely”. – If we assume that this version of Delta occurs, children will become infected and have the disease mostly asymptomatic or very mild, while they will infect those elderly people who are unvaccinated. Then we will have the same story as at the turn of September, October and November, i.e. we will have the fourth wave – explained the professor. As he added, considering that this mutation is very contagious, “we can even expect a hard lockdown.”
– We should not lull our vigilance, because there is a great chance that if we do not vaccinate and the Delta version will be the dominant version – and I believe that it will also be dominant in Poland within two or three months – then we will have a really strong the fourth wave – the TVN24 guest warned.
Main photo source: Radek Pietruszka / PAP