UPDATED 6:29 PM PT – Sunday, July 4, 2021
A top medical expert has argued fears of the Delta strain of COVID-19 have been overblown in media reports and assured the public there was no reason to be scared. Professor Monica Gandhi of the University of California, San Francisco stated although the strain has been able to spread faster, its virulence has remained low.
Dr. Gandhi added the Delta variant, which was first identified in India, does not cause more severe illness than any previous strains of COVID-19. She suggested public health officials were creating this dialogue of severe illness from the new strain as a ploy to increase vaccination rates.
“ancestral” strain of COVID-19 versus different variants- alpha, beta, gamma and a CA strain that didn’t end up being one of concern. Now, think it is important to explain that spike protein of the ancestral strain & that of the variants are not that different. Variants pic.twitter.com/Xdbdjztzt6
— Monica Gandhi MD, MPH (@MonicaGandhi9) July 4, 2021
Dr. Gandhi went on to express she did not expect a surge in COVID-19 cases to occur. She also highlighted the role of natural immunity and how it could protect against reinfection cases.
The CDC has recently reported COVID-19 survival rate is still above 99.9 percent.