While waiting to collect more data from scientific studies being done on Omicron, the UN health agency is urging caution, but also asking to be prepared for the potential spread of the virus.
After the Omicron coronavirus boom, which South Africa and Botswana first reported to the World Health Organization on November 24, 2021, the UN agency reiterated that it would be necessary to wait another two weeks to learn more about it. Transport capacity and severity.
In Geneva, WHO spokesperson Christian Lindmeier insists reports that microns are highly transmissible are only preliminary.
Unnecessary travel restrictions
Lindmeier also spoke out against general travel bans imposed on certain countries, except in the case of countries whose health systems cannot handle the increase in infections.
“It is better to prepare countries and their health systems for potential cases that may arrive, because we are absolutely certain that this variant of Omicron will spread,” he said.
The delta boom, which was announced as a variable of concern this summer, is now “dominant” – Lindmeier added – “with more than 90% worldwide. This is how this virus behaves, and most likely we will not be able to isolate it between countries. “.
Lindmeier called for caution in the face of rash reactions to reports of micronized infection.
“This is not the time to be discouraged, let’s first gather as much information as possible to make a correct assessment of the risks based on the data we have and start from there,” he said.
“Let’s not worry, or get confused, by the isolated data; they are all separately important but must be brought together to evaluate as a whole.”
Booster group for disease outbreak in South Africa
The agency has announced sending a technical support team to South Africa’s Gauteng province to trace Omicron and help trace contacts, amid a spike in coronavirus cases.
The World Health Organization reported Thursday that in the last week of November, South Africa reported a 311% increase in new cases, compared to the previous week.
Cases in Gauteng province, where Johannesburg is located, have seen a 375% increase week by week. Hospital admissions increased 4.2% in the past seven days compared to the previous week. Coronavirus-related deaths in the governorate also increased by 28.6% compared to the previous week.
Referring to the deployment of the reinforcements team, Dr Salam Joy, regional director for emergencies at the United Nations agency for Africa, noted that only 102 million Africans – 7.5% of the continent’s population – have already received full vaccinations. % did not receive even a single dose. “This is a dangerously large gap,” he said.
In a statement, the World Health Organization said South Africa had more patients developing COVID-19 after infection, something not observed with previous variables, according to a microbiologist at the country’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases.
To speed studies and enhance response to the new variable, the agency, in cooperation with African governments, is urging countries in the region to sequence between 75 and 150 samples per week.
We have bought time
“Early detection and notification of the new variant by Botswana and South Africa has bought the world time,” said Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa.
“We are still on time, but we must move quickly and intensify detection and prevention measures. Countries must adjust their response to COVID-19 and prevent a wave of cases from spreading across Africa and flooding already under-resourced health facilities.
Swisslatin / ONU Noticias (06.12.2021)
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