NEW DELHI: The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday named the first identified variants of COVID-19 in India as ‘Kappa’ and ‘Delta’ on after it started a naming system for COVID-19 variants using Greek alphabets.
The B.1.617.1 and B.1.617.2 variants has been named as ‘Kappa’ and ‘Delta’ respectively.
The decision for the naming system was taken to simplify the public discussion and also to get rid of certain stigmas associated with the emergence of new variants.
“A country may be more willing to report it has found a new variant if it knows the new version of the virus will be identified as Rho or Sigma rather than with the country’s name, Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s coronavirus lead, said.
She further added that these names will not replace existing scientific names, but are aimed to help in public discussion of variant of concern and variant of interest VOI/VOC.
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