Omicron 'tidal wave' could infect half of all Europeans within the next 2 months, WHO official says




  • In Science
  • 2022-01-11 15:22:56Z
  • By Business Insider
People wait in front of a pharmacy open on Sunday to get a COVID-19 test, in Paris, France, Sunday, Jan.
People wait in front of a pharmacy open on Sunday to get a COVID-19 test, in Paris, France, Sunday, Jan.  
  • More than half of all Europeans could soon contract the Omicron coronavirus variant, a WHO official said.

  • Omicron "represents a new west to east tidal wave sweeping across the region," said Dr. Hans Kluge.

  • Projections show that "more than 50% of the population in the region will be infected with Omicron in the next 6 to 8 weeks," he said.

More than half of the population in Europe could be infected with the highly contagious Omicron coronavirus variant within the next two months, a World Health Organization official warned Tuesday.

Dr. Hans Kluge, the WHO's regional director for Europe, said during a virtual press conference that the Omicron variant "represents a new west to east tidal wave sweeping across the [European] region."

"At this rate, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation forecasts that more than 50% of the population in the region will be infected with Omicron in the next 6 to 8 weeks," Kluge said.

Kluge noted that 50 of the 53 countries in Europe and central Asia have reported cases of Omicron and that the variant is "quickly" becoming the dominant strain in western Europe as it spreads to the Balkans.

The WHO official explained that "currently approved [COVID-19] vaccines do continue to provide good protection against severe disease and death, including for Omicron."

However, Kluge said, "because of the unprecedented scale of transmission, we are now seeing rising COVID-19 hospitalizations."

"It is challenging health systems and service delivery in many countries where Omicron has spread at speed, and threatens to overwhelm in many more," he said.

New COVID-19 cases worldwide are shattering records as the Omicron variant spreads.

COMMENTS

More Related News

Britain reduce COVID alert level as Omicron subsides
Britain reduce COVID alert level as Omicron subsides
  • US
  • 2022-05-20 16:44:42Z

Britain reduced its COVID-19 alert level from four to three on Friday, saying the Omicron-variant wave of the virus was subsiding and healthcare pressures...

G7 agree pact to better prepare for future pandemics
G7 agree pact to better prepare for future pandemics
  • World
  • 2022-05-20 12:56:46Z

The Group of Seven wealthy democracies announced plans Friday to strengthen epidemiological early-warning systems to detect infectious diseases with pandemic...

Monkeypox spreads in West, baffling African scientists
Monkeypox spreads in West, baffling African scientists
  • US
  • 2022-05-20 11:29:30Z

As more cases of monkeypox are detected in Europe and North America, some scientists who have monitored numerous outbreaks in Africa say they are baffled by ...

Cancer coalition aims to boost access to medicines in poorer countries
Cancer coalition aims to boost access to medicines in poorer countries
  • US
  • 2022-05-20 06:13:43Z

Pharmaceutical companies including Novartis and Roche have teamed up with global cancer organisations in an alliance aimed at getting more oncology...

Explainer-What is on (and off) the agenda of the WHO Assembly?
Explainer-What is on (and off) the agenda of the WHO Assembly?
  • US
  • 2022-05-20 06:08:57Z

More than 100 world health ministers will meet in Geneva next week for the World Health Organization's first in-person assembly in three years as the U.N...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Science