Mutated COVID-19 does not cancel effects of vaccines: expert

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ANKARA

The new strain of mutated coronavirus that is believed to have emerged recently in the UK has so far only affected its infection rate and appears to remain susceptible to the effects of vaccines, a senior Turkish medical scientist has said.

Speaking to Anadolu agency, Mustafa Necmi Ilhan, a member of the Social Sciences Council of the Turkish Ministry of Health, said that Turkey had taken appropriate measures when the mutated strain emerged.

Noting that Turkey has suspended flights from the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands and South Africa, Ilhan said it was important to quickly make and implement decisions in the fight against the pandemic.

He also stressed that passengers from those countries are undergoing PCR testing and would remain in quarantine depending on the test results.

The mutation, which reports so far show increases infectivity by up to 70%, has not impacted the virus’s ability to cause disease and therefore would not negate the positive effects expected from the vaccines currently deployed.

“However, if this affects or affects its ability to cause disease, then it may be necessary to review the vaccines,” he added.

To contain the spread of the disease, Turkey has imposed curfews at night and on weekends. It has also joined with other countries in banning flights from the UK over the new strain of virus which is believed to be more transmissible.

Vaccinations for protection against COVID-19 have started in the United States, the United Kingdom and other countries.

* Written by Ahmet Gencturk

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