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WHO says omicron Covid variant has spread to 38 countries

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The International Well being Group on Friday mentioned the omicron Covid-19 variant has been detected in 38 international locations, up from 23 two days in the past, with early knowledge suggesting the stress is extra contagious than delta.

“We do see an expanding expansion fee, we see expanding numbers of omicron being detected,” Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s Covid-19 technical lead mentioned throughout a Q&A livestreamed at the workforce’s social media channels Friday. “However now we have stories of omicron in 38 international locations in all six WHO areas.”

“There’s a advice that there’s greater transmissibility, what we wish to perceive is that if it is kind of transmissible in comparison to delta,” Van Kerkhove mentioned, noting that the delta variant continues to be dominant around the globe.

Van Kerkhove mentioned it is nonetheless too early to grasp the severity of illness brought about through omicron. Early stories of gentle signs in probably the most first instances the place it was once known have been in accordance with a cluster of college scholars who have a tendency to be more youthful and enjoy extra gentle signs than older adults, she mentioned.

“There was once preliminary stories that it tended to be extra gentle, however it is in reality too quickly,” Van Kerkhove mentioned. “Everyone who’s inflamed with SARS-CoV-2 irrespective of what variant will all the time get started out with a light illness. And so possibly it is going to forestall there with gentle, some individuals are asymptomatic in fact, however it should forestall with gentle illness or it should take a while.”


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