As Iran’s Health Ministry announced that the number of people hospitalized due to Covid-19 complications have tripled, new variants are about to sweep across the country.
The announcement by the ministry came as Masoud Younesian, the secretary of the epidemiology and research committee of the national taskforce to combat coronavirus, said on Sunday that two new subvariant of Omicron, namely BA4 and BA5 -- which started in the African continent -- may soon prevail over the country.
He added vaccines are less effective against the new subtypes, which have also been increasing in other countries around the world.
Younesian expressed worries about a new wave of the pandemic in the country, saying that now it is not far from the expectation that Iran’s daily infection numbers will reach four digits, and double-digit deaths are also a possibility.
According to the official data, about 20 to 25 percent of people in the country did not receive covid vaccines at all, and between 30 to 35 percent only got one dose.
The number of deaths in Iran since Covid-19 began has been 300,000 higher than in previous years, suggesting pandemic deaths may be more than officially reported.
Iran has reported around 141,000 deaths from Covid since the beginning of the pandemic, the Middle East’s highest official level, leaving 160,000 more deaths unexplained.