On November 24, 2021, the WHO’s Technical Advisory group assessed the new variant B.1.1.529, which was first reported to the United Nations health agency from South Africa. The epidemiological situation and surveys in South Africa characterized the new variant by three distinct peaks which have been reported, the latest of which was predominantly the Delta variant. currently circulating in South Africa, as a ‘variant of concern’ also it is named as Omicron Apart from South Africa, Hong Kong, Botswana, Israel and Belgium have reported cases of Omicron.
According to Maria Van Kerkohove, Covid-19 Technical Lead at WHO This variant has been detected and reported to officials of WHO by their colleagues in South Africa and there are fewer than 100 whole-genome sequences that are present. Complete information on this is still awaited but according to sources of WHO this variant has a large number of mutations. And the concern is that when you have so many mutations, it can have an impact on how the virus behaves or you don’t know how they will behave.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) of South Africa has said that currently “no unusual symptoms” of the following infection.
The government on November 28, Sunday reviewed the decision on resuming scheduled commercial international passenger services as well SOP on testing of incoming passengers, especially from countries identified as at-risk or where the cases of the new variant are detected, in the wake of the emergence of the new Covid-19 variant of concern Omicron. The meeting was held after the sources were reviewed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The emergence of the Omicron has become a new reason for worry worldwide. News of the variant was the reason countries have to announce new travel restrictions. several steps have already been taken in India to curb the spread of this variant in the country. Some experts claimed that to take care of vaccination and tight check should be done in order to control the third wave.
By Soma Mitra