The fresh Covid-19 variant ‘Omicron’ has accelerated global panic as governments around the globe rushed to impose new travel curbs, precautions & regulations. The new covid -19 strain, primarily detected in South Africa, has now spread in more than 10 countries, including Canada, the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Australia. Because of concerns that the new variant has the potential to be more reluctant to the protection offered by vaccines, there are rising concerns around the world that the pandemic and related lockdown restrictions will remain for far longer.
In this blog, we will be talking about what the WHO, World Health Organization, the top UN health unit have said about the Omicron variant and what countries and people should do to safeguard themselves from the mutant virus. The study on Omicron has started around the world, but it is yet apparent if this fresh Covid variant is extra transmissible than other prior variants like Alpha, Kappa, Delta, etc.
How dangerous is Omicron?
The introductory research indicates that there are boosting rates of hospitalization in the country where the variant has been found, South Africa. Nevertheless, this might be due to the rising overall numbers of people becoming infected, instead of an outcome of a particular infection with Omicron. If we were to ask about the situation presently there’s no information to specify that symptoms linked with Omicron are varied from those from other variants.
Can the Omicron variant mark/target an already infected person from Covid-19?
According to the World Health Organisation, the introductory fact has indicated that there may be a furthered risk of reinfection with Omicron (ie, people who have formerly had COVID-19 could become reinfected more handily with Omicron), as compared to other variants of worry, but the information is limited.
The Covid-19 vaccine’s & Omicron effectiveness
WHO is functioning with technical partners to comprehend the potential effect of this variant on prevailing Covid-19 vaccines. Suggested Medicines to deal with Omicron Covid-19 strain: Corticosteroids and IL6 Receptor Blockers will however be beneficial for managing patients with serious COVID-19. Still, other treatments will be evaluated, WHO explained.
What do countries need to do?
As Omicron has been assigned a Variant of Concern, various actions recommend nations to embark, including strengthening surveillance and sequencing of cases; sharing genome sequences on publicly functional databases.
“Countries should proceed to carry out effective public health criteria to lessen COVID-19 circulation overall, utilizing risk analysis and science-based strategies. They should enhance some public health and medical capabilities to regulate an accumulation in cases. WHO is empowering countries with assistance and guidance for both readiness and response,” explained the World Health Organisation in a circular.
How can someone safeguard against Covid-19?
The vastly effective steps people can take to decrease the spread of the COVID-19 virus is to keep a physical distance of at least 1 meter from others; wear a comfortable and well-fitting mask; open windows to increase ventilation; avert poorly ventilated or crowded spaces; cough or sneeze into a bent elbow or tissue, keep hands clean; and get vaccinated.
Where did omicron originate?
The variant is speculated to have arisen in the southern part of Africa (officially announced by WHO on November 24) and brought on a new rise of infections. The WHO explained that the first known confirmed B.1.1.529 infection was from a sample received on November 9. Omicron has now been discerned in travelers to Belgium, Hong Kong, and Israel as well as in southern Africa.
What makes it risky?
Early proof indicates a raised risk of reinfection compared with other highly transmissible variants, according to the World Health Organization. That implies people who contracted Covid-19 and recouped could be subject to seeing it again.
What is believed about the variant?
The researchers placed the B.1.1.529 in a specimen taken from Botswana in Africa. They were stunned to discover that it encompassed more than 30 changes (mutations) to the spike protein. Nevertheless, scientists are still reviewing the variant and its impacts further to specify if it causes a more serious disease. As with other variants, some infected people show no symptoms, the doctors in South Africa explained. Medical specialists, comprising the WHO, instructed against any overreaction before the variant was better comprehended. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US government’s prime infectious disease specialist, confessed though the omicron variant is thought to be extra transmissible and resistant to vaccines than other variants, “we don’t know that for certain right now”.
Latest updates from the World:
- There were 13 cases found in the Netherlands and a couple arrested too.
- South African doctor explains Omicron sufferers have ‘very mild’ symptoms.
- Israel declares it is banning foreigners for two weeks.
- Fauci says Americans must be prepared to combat the spread
- Biden is due to give an update on the U.S. response today