Wetin be BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron variant?

BA.4 and BA.5 were first identified in South Africa

Wia dis foto come from, Getty Images

Two new fast-spreading subvariants of Omicron dey cause fresh surge of Covid cases around di world.

BA.4 and BA.5 wey dem first identify for South Africa fit soon become di dominant strains for Europe and US, na so health experts tok.

Wetin exactly be BA.4 and BA.5?

Ever since Covid start, e dey change. Di new genetic versions dem dey call dem variants.

We don already see some major variants, like alpha and delta, wey cause massive waves of infection.

Di latest one wey experts dey concerned about na di - BA.4 and BA.5 – dem dey very closely related to di Omicron variant wey bin cause di last winter wave.

Dem add dem to World Health Organization monitoring list for March and also dem tag dem as variants of concern for Europe.

Where e dey spread?

Na early in di year e bin dey spread for South Africa and now e be like e dey spread fast pass oda variants.

Most European kontries get am now and e dey look like e go overtake oda types of  Covid soon. E don already happen for Portugal - BA.5 don become di dominant variant.

For US, officials say infections numbers don dey rise sake of di two new subvariants.

Covid infections for UK dey also increase, sake of by BA.4 and BA.5.

Australia too don report cases.

E dey harmful?

Experts no dey sure how e go affect kontries dem.

BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron no dey more dangerous than oda types of Covid.

Plenty pipo don build up immunity from past infections and vaccination, wey help to make di disease less risky overall.

But di new subvariants dey spread more easily.

Dat na sake say immunity fit dey reduce, but also because of di changes wey di virus don take.

And di fact say many kontries don lift dia Covid restrictions, e mean say pipo dey mix more, wey dey give di virus more chances to spread.

BA.4 and BA.5 still dey infect pipo even if dem don recently get oda types of Omicron.

A wave of new infections fit lead to more hospitalisations and some more deaths.

How you fit protect yourself against dem?

As wit oda Covid variants, di risk or serious illness dey high for elderly pipo, or pesin wey get underlying health conditions.

Although current vaccines no be di perfect fit, dem still be di best line of defence.

E don cut di risk of severe illness against di oda major Covid variants, including Delta, Alpha, Beta and Gamma.

Doctors say e dey important to get di recommended number of doses to gain maximum protection against existing and emerging variants.

How quickly we fit get new vaccines against di variants?

Already dem dey design and test updated versions of vaccines against Covid variants.

Manufacturers fit sharply produce, and regulators dey discuss how to fast-track di approval process.

Why new variants dey show face?

Viruses dey make carbon copies of themselves to reproduce, but e no dey perfect. Mistake dey enta wey dey change di genetic blueprint, di result na new version of di virus.

If dis give di virus a survival advantage, di new version go thrive.

Di more chances coronavirus get to make copies of itself inside us – wey be di host - di more opportunities e get for mutations to occur.