The Omicron Variant: What You Need to Know
In late November, Omicron emerged as a new SARs-Cov-2 variant, first identified in South Africa. WHO labeled it as a ‘variant of concern’ (VOC). A growing number of detected cases had been reported in countries including Hong Kong, Belgium, Israel, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
What does WHO say on the Omicron variant?
On November 26, 2021, WHO designated the Omicron variant or B.1.1.529 as a variant of concern. This decision was based on the evidence of several mutations that impact how it behaves.
It is still unclear whether the Omicron is more transmissible or not in comparison to other strains like the Delta.
It is not clear whether the infection from Omicron can cause severe diseases than the other variants.
How can you indicate symptoms of the Omicron variant?
According to some studies, symptoms of the Omicron are much similar to other strains of COVID.
Omicron vs. Delta other strain of COVID-19
Both Delta and Omicron are the variant of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
Effectiveness of SARS-Cov-2 infection
Some primary evidence from WHO suggests that there can be a high risk of infection for people who COVID-19 is previously infected compared to other variants.
Effectiveness of RT-PCR test
The widely used test RT-PCR continues to detect the infection, including the infection from the Omicron like the other variants.
Effectiveness of Vaccines
Scientists are still working to understand the impact and potential of the Omicron virus on the existing countermeasures.
Which age group is at a high risk from the Omicron variant?
From the current data and reports from South Africa, young children are at a high risk of infection.
How is the USA dealing with the Omicron variant?
The Omicron variant began to circulate in California, but even it reached the city yet.
How is the world dealing with this menace?
All the countries worldwide are increasing their surveillance for the new strain. Many countries started imposing restrictions on international flights and advising to limit the travel plans.