41 Cases of Indian COVID-19 Variant Found in Israel

YERUSHALAYIM -
Health-care workers take test samples of Israelis at a test site to collect samples for coronavirus testing, in Rechovot. (Yossi Aloni/Flash90)

At least 41 cases of the Indian coronavirus variant were detected in Israel, the Health Ministry said Thursday.

The Indian variant, B.1.617, has two mutations that may make it more infectious or less affected by vaccines.

The latest research shows that the vaccines appear to be effective against the Indian COVID-19 variant.

BioNTech co-founder Ugur Sahin, who developed the Pfizer-produced COVID-19 vaccine, voiced confidence on Wednesday that the vaccine works against the Indian variant.

“We are still testing the Indian variant, but the Indian variant has mutations that we have already tested for and which our vaccine works against, so I am confident,” said Sahin.

The Health Ministry reported that it documented only 100 new COVID-19 cases over the past day.

Of the 36,786 tests done over the past day, only 0.3% returned positive.

118 coronavirus patients are hospitalized in serious condition, including 65 on life support. The numbers  have been steadily dropping, baruch Hashem.

6,361 Israelis have succumbed to the virus.