WHO warns that Omicron poses ‘very high’ global risk

WHO warns that Omicron poses ‘very high’ global risk

2021-11-29 10:23:00 PM

WHO warns that Omicron poses ‘very high’ global risk

The UN agency has urged member states to accelerate vaccination of high-priority groups

Stephanie NebehayTravellers wait for documents checking, at the arrival terminal of Soekarno Hatta International airport, as the country bans the arrival of travellers who have been in eight African countries to curb the spread of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus, in Tangerang, near Jakarta, Indonesia on November 29 2021. Picture: REUTERS/WILLY KURNIAWAN

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Geneva — The Omicron coronavirus variant is likely to spread internationally, posing a “very high” global risk of infection surges that could have “severe consequences” in some areas, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Monday.The UN agency urged its 194 member states to accelerate vaccination of high-priority groups and, in anticipation of increased case numbers, to “ensure mitigation plans are in place” to maintain essential health services.

“Omicron has an unprecedented number of spike mutations, some of which are concerning for their potential impact on the trajectory of the pandemic,” the WHO said.“The overall global risk related to the new variant ...is assessed as very high.”To date, no deaths linked to Omicron had been reported, though further research was needed to assess its potential to escape protection against immunity induced by vaccines and previous infections, it said. headtopics.com

“Increasing cases, regardless of a change in severity, may pose overwhelming demands on healthcare systems and may lead to increased morbidity and mortality. The impact on vulnerable populations would be substantial, particularly in countries with low vaccination coverage,” it said.

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Johns Hopkins academic Joshua Sharfstein offers perspective on Covid-19 variant Omicron.Barry Schoub, chair of the ministerial advisory committee on vaccines, talks to a Bloomberg panel about the Covid-19 variant Omicron.The variant was first reported to WHO on November 24 from SA, where infections have risen steeply.

It has since spread around the world, with new cases found in the Netherlands, Denmark and Australia even as more countries imposed travel restrictions to try to seal themselves off. Japan said on Monday it would close its borders to foreigners, joining Israel in taking the toughest measures.

The WHO, in its latest guidance, reiterated that countries should use a “risk-based approach to adjust international travel measures in a timely manner”. Further advice would be forthcoming, it said.“The presence of multiple mutations of the spike protein in the receptor-binding domain suggests that Omicron may have a high likelihood of immune escape from antibody-mediated protection. However, immune escape potential from cell-mediated immunity is more difficult to predict,” it said. headtopics.com

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“Overall, there are considerable uncertainties in the magnitude of immune escape potential of Omicron.”More data was expected in coming weeks.“Covid-19 cases and infections are expected in vaccinated persons, albeit in a small and predictable proportion”, it added. 

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WHO warns that Omicron poses ‘very high’ global riskThe UN agency has urged member states to accelerate vaccination of high-priority groups

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Omicron potentially more transmissible, warns top SA scientistThe detection of Omicron has coincided with an extremely rapid increase in cases and hospital admissions in Gauteng since mid-November Also potentially less transmissable or also potentially the same as Delta. Man the level of journalism here is bad

Where is the new Covid-19 variant most prevalent in SA?President Cyril Ramaphosa said studies about whether Omicron was transmitted more easily between people and its impact on the increased risk of infection were ongoing. Not for everyone. I love to share this for the benefit of who’s sees and needs it: Investment has been so profiting and I withdrew last R18,000 after investing with iamcallaway_b this is a good set time to invest for the market I’d good now join the platform and thank me later

Cyril Ramaphosa to address the nation tonight on new Covid-19 variantThe national coronavirus command council met on Saturday to discuss the discovery of Omicron

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