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Variant Omicron, South Africa: “From the first data, mild illness, caution for the elderly and frail”

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Mild illness with no major symptoms

The rate of attention on the variable appears to have peaked. “The new Omicron coronavirus causes mild illness without significant symptoms,” said Angelique Coetzee, president of the South African Medical Association, the country from which the virus originated and which isolated it.

weakest fear

However, Dr. Coetzee noted that the elderly and people with diseases can still be at risk. She claims that the possibility of a new variant has already emerged several days ago, due to the presence in the private clinic she runs in Pretoria of people who had symptoms that did not initially appear characteristic of Covid.

I am sentome

People of all races showed a feeling of tiredness, children with a racing heart, but no one showed one of the most common symptoms of the novel coronavirus infection, namely, loss of taste and smell. “Their symptoms were very different and mild to those I treated earlier,” says the chief medical officer of South Africa, who has been in the profession for 33 years. On November 18, when four members of the same family tested positive and developed symptoms, Coetzee said he informed the scientific committee that coordinates vaccination and treatment policies. A few dozen of his patients tested positive, at least half of whom were unvaccinated.

A more contagious but less deadly infection

Coetzee expressed concern about the elderly, who are at greater risk, especially if they have cardiovascular disease or diabetes. According to Israel’s head of public health, Sharon Alroy-Peress, the possibility of transmission of the new Omicron variant of Covid-19 is “very high” but at the same time – he stressed – in cases of vaccinated people the disease is “very severe”. a light”.

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A series of tests to evaluate the effectiveness of the vaccine

From a virological point of view, with studies to assess effects on vaccination, it will take a few days for us to be able to run a series of laboratory tests on animals, after which about two weeks will be needed to review the effect on the population.

South African President: ‘They canceled the flight ban’

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has appealed to the world to “immediately lift the blockade of flights” from his country. In a speech to the nation, after the discovery of the Omicron variant, he then said that, for the time being, there are no new restrictions to combat Covid but that the possibility of a vaccine commitment would be explored in some circumstances.

European Union: ‘It’s a race against time’

In the rest of the world, governments are preparing for a “race against time” to confront the Omicron variant. This was stated by the President of the European Union Commission, Ursula von der Leyen. “We are taking the variant very seriously. It will take two to three weeks to get a full view of the characteristics of this mutation – he added -. The priority, first and foremost, is vaccination and getting the third dose. Second priority is maintaining the masks. And social distancing ” .

London calls for an urgent meeting with the G7 health ministers In Britain, the government called an urgent meeting of G7 health ministers on Monday to discuss developments in the pandemic related to the formula.

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