COVID Sub-Variant JN.1 Infectious but Mild; Delhi Govt Vigilant

New Delhi, Dec 20: The COVID-19 sub-variant JN.1 is infectious but mild, said Delhi Health Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj on Wednesday. He assured that the Delhi government is fully prepared to handle the situation.

Amid increase in COVID cases in the country, the Delhi government said that they will increase genome surveillance.

Bharadwaj mentioned that they are reviewing the availability of oxygen cylinders, ventilator beds, and other requirements.

He clarified that the JN.1 sub-variant is a mild variant of Omicron, which is infectious but not very serious. The government is making necessary arrangements such as oxygen cylinders, ventilator beds, and isolation wards. Most patients are getting cured through home isolation, and only a few require oxygen or ventilator support.

Bharadwaj emphasized that people should not panic and should remain cautious to prevent the spread of the infection. Twenty-one cases of the JN.1 sub-variant have been detected in the country so far, but there is no need for panic.

The central government has advised states and Union Territories to remain vigilant.

India recorded 614 new COVID-19 cases, the highest since May 21, and the active caseload has increased to 2,311. The cumulative toll stands at 5,33,321 with three deaths reported from Kerala in the last 24 hours. Delhi has four active cases.

The government official in Delhi stated that they are fully prepared to handle any health emergency and will increase genomic surveillance.

The official mentioned that the new strain is not virulent and does not pose a severe health risk.

Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya reviewed the preparedness of health facilities across the country and emphasized the need to be alert against emerging strains.

The World Health Organization has classified JN.1 as a separate variant of interest due to its rapid spread, but it poses a low global public health risk.

The variant was previously classified as a variant of interest as part of the BA.2.86 sub-lineages. However, in recent weeks, JN.1 cases have been reported in multiple countries, and its prevalence has rapidly increased globally.


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