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    Delta Variant worries US, mask likely to make a comeback

    The Delta variant, which is more contagious and aggressive has impacted every state in the US and accounted for 26.1 per cent of the total confirmed cases, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    This has forced the health authorities in the US to reconsider the mask mandae for people.

    “I’m concerned about the Delta variant,” Xinhua news agency quoted the country’s Surgeon General Vivek Murthy as saying on Wednesday.”And I am worried that what we are seeing in terms of a plateauing of cases nationally but also an increase in cases in many small sections of the US, that that is, in fact, being driven by the Delta variant.”

    There is still a lot of virus circulating in the US, and close to 300 people are still dying daily from the coronavirus, Murthy said in an interview with CNN, citing data from recent weeks. Spikes in coronavirus cases are “entirely avoidable, entirely preventable” with vaccination, said Anthony Fauci, White House chief medical advisor.

    The World Health Organization, citing the rise of Delta, has encouraged fully vaccinated people to continue wearing masks.

    In Los Angeles County, the pace of Delta’s spread has prompted officials to reinstate mask guidance for public indoor spaces — regardless of vaccination status.

    Public health officials in Los Angeles County on Tuesday strongly recommended that local residents wear masks indoors in public places such as “grocery or retail stores, theatres and family entertainment centres, and workplaces when you don’t know everyone’s vaccination status”.

    The Delta variant is expected to become the dominant coronavirus strain in the US, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said recently. Experts and officials are concerned that coronavirus variants, especially the highly transmissible Delta variant, will continue to drive up new cases. With half the US population still not fully vaccinated, experts warned it could cause a resurgence of Covid-19 in the fall.

    The data below show the estimated biweekly proportions of the most common SARS-CoV-2 lineages circulating in the United States, based on greater than 175,000 sequences collected through CDC’s national genomic surveillance since Dec 20, 2020 and grouped in 2-week intervals. Data are subject to change over time and will be updated as more data become available. Variant proportions are adjusted using statistical weighting to correct for the non-random sampling of sequencing data over time and across states and to provide more representative national estimates.

    Check out the Nowcast weighted estimates 

    Wearing a mask over your nose and mouth is required on planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States and while indoors at U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations. Travelers are not required to wear a mask in outdoor areas of a conveyance (like a ferry or top deck of a bus).

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