WHO report: Omicron strain found in 57 countries

Today, Wednesday, the World Health Organization announced in its weekly epidemiological bulletin the discovery of a new omicron strain in 57 countries across six WHO regions:

“As of December 7, 2021, the omicron option has been confirmed in 57 states.”

Experts record a rapid increase in detected cases of coronavirus infection in South African countries. They attribute this fact to the increased testing in the population, as well as the rapid spread of the omicron variant. WHO stresses:

“Preliminary analyzes suggest that mutations present in the omicron variant can reduce the neutralizing activity of antibodies, resulting in reduced protection from natural immunity. Perhaps this is why this variant appears to be spreading rapidly among highly immunocompromised populations, such as it’s happening in South Africa. “

WHO experts believe that more data is needed to assess the effectiveness of existing vaccines:

“More data is needed to assess whether mutations in the omicron variant can lead to a decrease in the immune defense received from the vaccine. More data is also needed on the effectiveness of vaccines, including the use of additional doses. WHO will continue to work with partners to monitor and evaluate these data as soon as they appear. “

WHO cites evidence from different countries that the omicron variant has advantages in growth over other circulating strains. However, experts “do not yet know if this leads to an increase in infectiousness”, as well as lack of clarity regarding the severity of the disease. At the moment, according to information on 212 cases of infection with this strain identified in 18 EU countries, experts say that the disease is “asymptomatic or mild.”

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