New COVID-19 Variants: 7 Key Questions Answered By Experts
Are they deadlier?
According to British health experts, where the new B.1.1.7 variant was first discovered, preliminary evidence shows that the UK variant is indeed 30 percent deadlier.
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Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease expert and chief medical advisor to the president, confirmed that the UK variant has “a certain degree of increase in what we call virulence, namely the power of the virus to cause more damage, including death.” People might not suffer more severe effects of the mutated versions but their fast spreading could put a toll on an already burdened medical system and result in more fatalities.
In many parts of the United States, the intensive care units were already overwhelmed by the large number of cases at the end of 2020. Extensive outbreaks of these new variants could be disastrous for the health systems.