A Covid-19 variant first identified in India last year has been classified by the World Health Organisation as a “variant of global concern” with some preliminary studies showing its increased transmissibility and resistance to vaccines.
The B.1.617 variant — first found in India — is the fourth to be classified by WHO as being of global concern. The other variants included those identified in Britain, South Africa, and Brazil.p
Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO technical lead on Covid-19, said on Monday: “We are classifying this as a variant of concern at a global level. There is some available information to suggest increased transmissibility.”