Chief health officer Kerry Chant said authorities had linked the strain to a person who returned from overseas in September.However, Dr Chant said exactly how the strain emerged and entered the community was still being examined.“We’ve detected a genome of the Delta strain which is different from that that was previously transmitting in our community,” she said.“What we’re investigating now is: was there someone else on the plane that was positive? How could it have got out What was the mechanism of that?“We’re still finding out how much transmission is being generated in the community from these cases. That will evolve over time. “Dr Chant urged Australians not to become too panicked about the new strain, saying it did not appear to be any more dangerous than the original Delta variant. “There‘s nothing about this Delta strain from looking at the genomics that suggested it’s any more transmissible, or going to cause illness or any other issues additional to the current Delta strain,” she said.“It’s a different Delta strain but it’s still a Delta strain so we know its characteristics are the same.“It’s likely to be more transmissible than previous strains, it’s associated with more hospitalisations for older age groups, but it’s not got anything that makes us more concerned about this strain versus the others.”Dr Chant said NSW would continue to investigate the new strain but it was unlikely to change the state’s public health response.
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