Omicron strain of coronavirus that causes COVID now in at least a dozen countries, as experts urge unvaccinated to get shots

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The new strain of coronavirus that causes COVID-19 Omicron and has been classified a ‘type of concern’ by the World Health Organization made headlines on Monday over the pandemic, though experts insisted it would at least take It will take at least a few weeks. It remains to be determined whether it is more transmissible or more lethal than the earlier variants.

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The WHO cautioned that the overall global risk from omicrons is ‘very high’, and reiterated its message from Friday that countries should test and track the variant and accelerate vaccine coverage and the wearing of face masks, distancing and hand washing. Such mitigation measures should be emphasized.

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WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a special session of the World Health Assembly that the emergence of the new version “underlines how dangerous and precarious our situation is.”

The session has been called to allow WHO member states to formulate a plan to deal with the next pandemic and avoid some of the loopholes that have hindered the response to the current pandemic.

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Tedros said, “Indeed, O’Micron demonstrates why the world needs a new agreement on pandemics: Our current system prevents countries from alerting others to the dangers that will inevitably land on their shores.” “

Separately, G-7 health ministers are meeting on Monday to discuss measures to tackle Omicron.

Already, several countries have announced restrictions or restrictions on travel from South Africa and neighboring countries including the US, UK, Japan, Australia, Poland, Norway and the European Union. The White House will offer an update on US plans later on Monday.

Omicron has been detected in at least a dozen countries, including Canada, which means it has reached North America. Other countries include France, the UK, Germany, Portugal, Denmark, Israel, Hong Kong, Australia and South Africa. For now, it is unclear whether it will prove resistant to existing vaccines, although modern mRNA,
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He said an Omicron vaccine could be ready by early 2022.

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More Omicron cases emerge as world scrambles to learn more about latest COVID strain

Dr. Anthony Facui, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical officer to President Joe Biden, urged Americans to take this version seriously, but said there was nothing to panic.

“As I’ve often said, we really need to prepare for the worst,” Fauci told ABC News, “This Week.” “It cannot be that we have to go the way that people are saying. We don’t know much about this virus. Therefore, we want to prepare as much as we can, but it may turn out that this preparation, although important, does not necessarily take us to the next level. ,

Fauci said getting vaccinated and boosters is still the best defense.

“I don’t think there’s any chance that it could completely evade any protection by the vaccine. It might reduce it a little bit, but that’s why you promote it,” he told ABC News. Told. “If ever there was a reason to promote people who were vaccinated, and people who weren’t vaccinated, they are now,” Fauci said in a separate interview. with nbc news,

There are an average of over 960 COVID deaths a day in the US, According to the New York Times Tracker, However, given the shortage of staff at health centers during the holiday weekend, the number could be underestimated.

But cases and hospitalizations are rising again and there are concerns that traveling over the Thanksgiving holiday will lead to a new surge in cases. Michigan continues to lead the country in terms of new cases measured on a per capita basis, with an average of more than 8,000 new cases a day.

But other hot spots are emerging, including Massachusetts, where cases are up more than 80% in the past two weeks, and Illinois, where they have risen by more than 70%, the tracker shows.

NS Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Vaccine Tracker, Meanwhile, it is showing that 196 million people living in the US have been fully vaccinated, equivalent to 59.1% of the total population. That number is barely gone in weeks.

In other news, Dutch police have arrested a married couple who fled a quarantine hotel after one of them tested positive for COVID on their arrival from South Africa on a flight out of the country, The Guardian reported. A Portuguese woman and a Spanish man were arrested in their seats on a plane bound for Spain.

Scientists and vaccine makers are investigating Omicron, a Covid-19 variant with about 50 mutations that has been found in several countries after spreading in southern Africa. Here’s what we know that the US and others impose travel restrictions. Photo: Faizari Ismail/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

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The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness climbed above 261.6 million on Monday while the death toll exceeded 5.20 million, according to Data collected by Johns Hopkins University,

The US continues to lead the world with a total of 48.2 million cases and 776,651 deaths.

India is second only to the US with 34.6 million cases and has suffered 468,790 deaths. Brazil has the second highest number of deaths at 614,278 and 22 million cases.

In Europe, Russia has the highest number of deaths at 268,705, followed by Britain with 145,218 deaths.

China, where the virus was first discovered in late 2019, has had 111,188 confirmed cases and 4,809 deaths, according to its official numbers, which are widely underestimated.

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