The omicron variant of the coronavirus, which two weeks ago had only been detected in 1.6% of global cases analyzed in laboratories, is now present in 58.5% of those analyzes, So it has overtaken the delta and has become the dominant strain worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
The weekly epidemiological report published this Tuesday by the WHO shows that of the more than 357,000 analyzes carried out by the global network of GISAID laboratories in the last 30 days more than 208,000 they detected the omicron variant.
On the other hand, 147,000 (41%), corresponded to the delta variant, which in the previous result of weeks ago it still concentrated 96% of the cases and it was the main dominant strain for much of 2021.
The report highlights that the omicron variant is capable of “evade immunity”, since there is transmission even between vaccinated and people who had previously overcome the disease and had developed antibodies.
“Very high” health risk
The WHO also underlines on the other hand “growing evidence” that the omicron is less serious than earlier forms of the disease.
Despite this, in another WHO report also published this Tuesday, the organization stressed that the health risks presented by the omicron variant are still “very high”, since it can produce a increase in hospitalizations and deaths in vulnerable populations.
The daily record of infections in more than two years of pandemic so far stands on January 6, with more than 2.6 million global positives, a figure that the WHO itself recognizes could be much higher actually because of the many infections diagnosed with home tests and not reported.
Since then, the barrier of 2 million cases has been exceeded in several days, and a peak has not yet been confirmed in infections, despite the fact that some countries first affected by the omicron variant, such as South Africa, do seem to have reached it.