Houston Methodist Hospital reports its 1st case of lambda COVID-19 variant

HOUSTON – A major Texas hospital system reported its first case of the COVID-19 lambda variant, as the state reels from rampant delta variation.

Houston Methodist Hospital, which operates eight hospitals in its network, said the first case of lambda was confirmed Monday.

The lambda variant was first detected in Peru in December 2020 and accounted for 81% of COVID-19 cases in the country as of April 2021, according to a report by the World Health Organization. WHO June. Currently, WHO designates lambda as “variant of interest”.

Houston Methodist had more than 100 COVID-19 patients across the hospital system last week. That number rose to 185 on Monday, with the majority of those infected not being vaccinated, according to a hospital announcement Monday.

Of those infections, about 85 percent have been diagnosed with the delta variant, hospital officials said.

“We are seeing an alarming increase in COVID-19 cases across the Houston area, with the sharpest increases occurring over the weekend,” Houston Methodist said. “Increased hospitalizations put additional strain on many of our hospitals that are nearing capacity.”

The hospital’s president and CEO, Dr Marc Boom, stressed that the community must “get vaccinated and reduce the spread of the virus”.

Despite reports of lambda variation, experts at Houston Methodist say plains remain a top concern in the US

“Lambda is the dominant variant in Peru, and Peru has had a very difficult time with COVID-19. It shares mutations with the alpha, beta, gamma variants, which is the predominant variant in Brazil. Wesley Long, medical director of Diagnostic Microbiology at Houston Methodist, told ABC News.

“I don’t think there’s enough evidence at this point that we should be more concerned with lambdas than plains, I still think deltas are a primary concern for us. There’s a lot of evidence for that. found that the delta was much more contagious, the viral load was much higher,” he added.

The lambda variant “is associated with significant rates of community transmission in many countries, with increased prevalence over time concurrently with increased incidence of COVID-19,” the WHO said in the report. reported in June. In June, this variant was detected in 29 countries.

The delta variant, first detected in India in December, now accounts for about 83% of all COVID-19 infections sequenced, said Dr Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. in the United States, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said during a Senate hearing on Tuesday. WHO designates delta as a “variant of concern”.

Long noted that Houston Methodist has seen its positivity rate increase and hospitalizations increase, but the situation on the ground remains “far behind” from its winter peak.

“[Infections are] increasing. How many more cases will we have? “, Long said. We will need more vaccinated people and the unvaccinated in particular practicing all the safety practices we’ve learned during the pandemic to help slow the spread of COVID. All of that is vitally important to keeping this delta wave under control. “

Currently, 51 percent of the Texas population ages 12 and older are fully immunized, according to state figures.

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https://abc7chicago.com/lambda-variant-covid-variants-houston-methodist-hospital-texas-cases/10901245/ | Houston Methodist Hospital reports its 1st case of lambda COVID-19 variant

Huynh Nguyen

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