How Worried Should We Be About Omicron Covid-19 Variant?
The new coronavirus variant Omicron has emerged as a new variant of Coronavirus and has become dominant in South Africa. According to the World health organization, Omicron is now detected in around 24 countries around the world.
The South Africa National Institute for communicable diseases says vaccination could prevent severe forms of the disease. South Africa was the first country to report the Omicron, a new variant of coronavirus. Now, the according to latest reports India, Europe, and Asia have also confirmed the cases of Omicron recently.
A report from the World health organization (WHO ) is this new variant is a ’cause of concern’ as there is a chance risk of re-infection thus it is advised to maintain immunity and get your vaccination dose as early as possible. Most of the people who have been hospitalized haven’t received the vaccination against coronavirus, thus it is important to get vaccinated to prevent serious forms of illness from Omicron, says NICD report.
Current Information About Omicron
According to scientists of WHO, Omicron is a cause of concern as it might spread quickly than other variants of coronavirus
Delta variant of coronavirus had been dominant till now, worldwide and as not much information is available about Omicron till now, it couldn’t be predicted whether Omicron would displace Delta.
But the current scenario shows, there is a spike in cases of coronavirus (new infections )in South Africa and the other countries have also started reporting the cases with Omicron but the illness is mild and people are recovering well.
What We Know About Omicron
According to scientists, since the variant is new not much information about is available, and post a few weeks only it could be determined how severe is the form of diseases with Omicron, how contagious is it. Experts also don’t know to date would Omicron be fatal or it would cause a severe or less severe form of illness compared to other coronavirus strains like beta, delta.
Researchers and experts are conducting studies to understand Omicron and how effective is vaccination against Omicron. It is not clear whether Omicron is contagious or is transmissible from one person to another. Though the cases have shown a spike in new infections with Omicron more research is required to be sure about this.
It is also not clear how severe is the disease with Omicron. Although hospitalization is increased in South Africa due to Omicron this might be due to the overall increase in the infected people.The associated symptoms with Omicron till now are quite similar to other variants of coronavirus thus there is no information to date whether Omicron would show any new symptoms in the infected people.
Chances of Reinfection
Very limited information is available about the chances of getting re-infected with a new variant Omicron among already infected people. Few pieces of evidence suggest chances of re-infection with Omicron is more than other variants of coronavirus but vaccination could prevent a severe form of illness. But no information is available regarding this till now and researchers are carrying researches to know the trend of Omicron.
Though vaccination has proved quite effective in preventing a severe form of illness with other strains of coronavirus, with Omicron the vaccine effectiveness is still the topic of research for researchers.
Detection of Omicron with RT – PCR Test
RT-PCR test is used worldwide to detect coronavirus infection and has become the most reliable test to detect the coronavirus.RT-PCR is used for detecting Omicron too till date but researchers are doing researches to identify how much is Rapid antigen test beneficial in detecting the strain of Omicron.
The treatment strategy followed with other strains of coronavirus to treat the infection is still being used to treat the new strain Omicron. However within several weeks only it could be identified whether any other new line of treatment is required for Omicron.
WHO Instructions For Other Countries
Omicron, which emerged as a new strain of coronavirus still needs various researches by researchers at various aspects.WHO recommends to countries, start taking actions like increasing surveillance, reporting the Omicron cases to WHO, performing the laboratory investigations properly, start taking the measures immediately for benefit of people.
The countries should start implementing the Covid 19 rules and regulations all across the country to prevent the spread of infection. The healthcare system should be made strong to manage the cases if there is an increase in hospitalization like the second wave of coronavirus.
The countries should urge the people to get vaccinated with both doses of vaccination to prevent the younger, older, and vulnerable groups from getting infected. Along with it, the diagnostic and treatment measures should be made strong in the country to prevent the risk of infection.
WHO Instructions For People
According to WHO the public should start taking proper precautions again sincerely to prevent the risk of getting an infection with Omicron.
- Keep a distance of 1 to 2 meters away from each other.
- Avoid social gatherings as much as possible.
- Wear a well-fitted mask at social places and every time you go outside home.
- Sanitize and wash your hands properly and regularly.
- Do not shake hands.
- Avoid poorly ventilated places.
- If you have a cough, or sneeze use your tissue and hanky regularly.
- Get your jab of vaccination for sure.
Final Note –
Presently World health organizations and researchers are carrying out researches to better understand this new strain of virus Omicron.
Studies are going on to know in detail about everything about Omicron.
WHO recommends countries and people to contribute and follow instructions provided to prevent the chance of infection thus better patient outcome and recovery.
Within a few days, detailed information would be available regarding Omicron, till then it is advised to stay safe at your own homes and follow all the precautions against Coronavirus and its new strain Omicron.