The World Health Organization has revealed the Omicron variant of the coronavirus is spreading rapidly around the world.
While data has yet to explain whether this latest strain of Covid-19 is any more dangerous or deadly, there’s no denying that its transmissibility is high.
WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus explained how Omicron has now been detected in 77 countries after only just being discovered late last month.
“And the reality is that Omicron is probably in most countries, even if it hasn’t been detected yet,” he said. “Omicron is spreading at a rate we have not seen with any previous variant.”
The health body chief has also told everyone that they need to be taking Omicron seriously.
Initial data from South Africa indicated the variant could be ‘mild’ compared to other strains like Delta, however that shouldn’t mean it’s to be taken any lighter.
“We’re concerned that people are dismissing Omicron as mild,” Dr Tedros said. “Surely, we have learned by now that we underestimate this virus at our peril.
“Even if Omicron does cause less severe disease, the sheer number of cases could once again overwhelm unprepared health systems.”