Home / News / India /  Omicron BF. 7 likely to trigger a new COVID wave during Diwali. Check 5 symptoms

Covid has been surprising us with a new variant every few months. Of course,  Omicron has changed the course of COVID pandemic. Following the emergence of this variant, the symptoms related to it have become much milder, but in terms of how they spread, each one seems to be fitter than its predecessor. 

And the newest cousins in the block are BA.5.1.7 and BF.7., again which are said to have greater transmissibility which brings concerns of a new wave during Diwali. 

What is Omicron BF. 7? 

The latest Omicron subvariant BF. 7 was first detected in Northwest China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, and the sub-variants have been responsible for the recent surge in China. It is extremely fast spreading and has already been detected in the United States, UK, Australia and Belgium.

This new Omicron BF. 7 is also known as the 'Omicron spawn'.

One case of Omicron BF.7 has been reported from India, it has been detected by Gujarat Biotechnology Researhach Centre.  

What are the main concerns regarding the new variant? 

Omicron BF.7 is able to dodge the antibodies from earlier infection or vaccinations and it does better than the previous subvariants. 

"The next two to three weeks are crucial. Covid-19 is still around, and new variants are being reported in different parts of the world. Obviously, we cannot remain unscathed from them. So, we need to be careful as festivals are a few days ahead," said Dr N.K. Arora, chairman, National Technical Advisory Group of Immunization (NTAGI).

What are the symptoms? 

Sore throat, congestion, fatigue, cough and runny nose continue to be the most reported symptoms of this sub-variant too. 

In the next couple of days, India will be celebrating 5-day festival of Diwali Diwali, Dhanteras, Govardhan Puja and Bhai Dooj. And with COVID-related restrictions relaxed, it is expected to be celebrated in full fervour this time. 

However, this could lead to a possible surge in the number of COVID cases, which is why experts recommend all to remain cautious. 

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