The World Health Organization issued a new warning Monday about the omicron variant of the novel coronavirus, saying it could be dangerous for both fully vaccinated and those who might have been infected before.
- “There is now consistent evidence that Omicron is spreading significantly faster than the Delta variant,” WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Monday, per Reuters.
- “And it is more likely people vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19 could be infected or re-infected,” Tedros said.
This is why WHO chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said it would be “unwise” to conclude that the omicron variant only leads to mild symptoms.
- The omicron variant is evading immune responses, she said.
- Booster shots should be targeted toward those with weak immune systems, Swaminathan added.
One new study recently suggested the omicron variant of COVID-19 is “markedly resistant” to the current COVID-19 vaccines, antibody treatments and COVID-19 vaccine booster shots, as I wrote for the Deseret News.
- “We found (omicron) to be markedly resistant to neutralization by serum not only from convalescent patients, but also from individuals vaccinated with one of the four widely used COVID-19 vaccines. Even serum from persons vaccinated and boosted with mRNA-based vaccines exhibited substantially diminished neutralizing activity against B.1.1.529,” the study said.
- “Our booster vaccine regimens work against omicron,” Fauci said.