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The World Well being Group (WHO) lamented Tuesday that half one million COVID-19 deaths had been recorded because the Omicron variant was found, calling the toll “past tragic”.
The WHO’s incident supervisor Abdi Mahamud stated that 130 million instances and 500,000 deaths had been recorded globally since Omicron was declared a variant of concern in late November.
It has since quickly overtaken Delta because the world’s dominant COVID-19 variant as a result of it’s extra transmissible, although it seems to trigger much less severe illness.
“Within the age of efficient vaccines, half one million individuals dying, it is actually one thing,” Mahamud advised a reside interplay on the WHO’s social media channels.
“Whereas everybody was saying Omicron is milder, (they) missed the purpose that half one million individuals have died since this was detected.
“It is past tragic.”
Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s technical lead on COVID-19, stated the sheer variety of Omicron instances was “astounding”, whereas the true variety of instances and deaths might be a lot larger than simply these recognized about.
“It makes the earlier peaks look virtually flat,” she stated.
“We’re nonetheless in the course of this pandemic. I hope we’re getting nearer to the tip of it,” she stated. “Many nations haven’t handed their peak of Omicron but.”
Van Kerkhove stated she was extraordinarily involved that the numbers of deaths had elevated for a number of weeks in a row.
“This virus continues to be harmful,” she stated.
The WHO is monitoring 4 sub-lineages of Omicron. Whereas the BA.1 sub-strain was dominant, BA.2 is extra transmissible and is anticipated to account for an rising share of Omicron instances.
Van Kerkhove stated there was no indication so far to counsel that BA.2 resulted in additional extreme COVID illness than BA.1, however pressured that it was nonetheless “very early days” in evidence-gathering.
Mahamud added that it was as but unknown whether or not somebody might be contaminated with each BA.1 and BA.2 on the similar time.
COVID-19 has killed practically 5.75 million individuals because it emerged in China in December 2019, based on an AFP tally compiled from official sources on Tuesday.
Practically 10.25 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered globally.
© 2022 AFP
WHO laments ‘tragic’ 500,000 COVID-19 demise toll since Omicron (2022, February 8)
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