SINGAPORE — The new Covid variant omicron will likely “overwhelm the whole world” in the coming months, according to a Singapore-based infectious disease doctor.
While vaccines against the strain can be developed quickly, they need to be tested over three to six months to prove that they can provide immunity against the variant, Dr. Leong Hoe Nam of Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital said Wednesday.
He told CNBC that “but frankly, omicron would dominate and overwhelm all the world in three-to six months.” “Street Signs Asia.”
Delta is the strain that is currently accounts for 99%Covid infections started becoming more common in the Indian state of Maharashtra in March 2021,And was dominant globally by July, according to Reuters.
Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel on Monday said it will take months to develop and ship a vaccine that specifically targets the omicron variant.
PfizerAlbert Bourla, CEO also spoke shots could be ready in less than 100 days, or slightly over three months.
Leong stated that a vaccine specifically targeting omicron was a good idea but not feasible. We won’t have the ability to rush the vaccines and almost everyone will become infected by omicron due to its high transmissibility and infectiousness.
Experts don’t know exactly how contagious the highly mutated omicron variant is, but the virus’ spike protein — which binds to human cells — has mutations associated with higher transmission and a decrease in antibody protection.
U.S. infectious diseases expert Dr. Anthony Fauci stated that the profile of mutations suggests that this virus will have a higher transmissibility rate and might be able to evade immunity protection. told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday.
Some doctors think that existing vaccines can provide protection from the new variant.
According to Dr. Syra Mamadad (fellow at Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs), vaccines can trigger a host of immune responses in the body.
She stated that she believes the new vaccine will outperform our existing ones to some extent. “Capital Connection”Wednesday’s statement noted that the vaccines had been able to protect against delta.
It may affect vaccine effectiveness by a few notches but it is yet to see. She said that current vaccines and boosters will still offer a good level of protection.
Leong said that although a 3-dose regimen of vaccines is likely to protect against serious disease, many countries have still low vaccination rates.
Omicron, according to Heard, “threatens the whole of the world” by a sudden increase in the number of cases. Health-care systems may be overwhelmed even though only 1% and 2% are hospitalized.
Omicron first was detected in South Africa. It was then designated as a concern variant by WHO last week. In the meantime, Omicron has been detected in several other places, including Hong Kong, the Netherlands and Portugal.
Leong suggested that we continue to spread vaccinations and keep our distance. We should also wear masks for now.
Madad also echoed this sentiment. She said, “We will continue to implement the Covid-19 preventive measures on an ongoing basis.” It is the best way to go.
— CNBC’s Saheli Roy Choudhury, Spencer Kimball and Yen Nee Lee contributed to this report.