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Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Omicron Variant No More Severe Than Original Strain, Says WHO

Omicron Variant No More Severe Than Original Strain, Says WHO

Based on a sample of people from various countries, "we are not seeing a difference in severity of BA.1 compared to BA.2," Maria Van Kerkhove, a senior WHO official, said in an online question and answer session.
The BA.2 variant of the Omicron coronavirus strain is not more severe than the original, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday.

Based on a sample of people from various countries, "we are not seeing a difference in severity of BA.1 compared to BA.2," Maria Van Kerkhove, a senior WHO official, said in an online question and answer session.

"So this is a similar level of severity as it relates to risk of hospitalisation. And this is really important, because in many countries, they've had a substantial amount of circulation, both of BA.1 and BA.2," she said.

Van Kerkhove, who leads the technical side of the WHO's Covid-19 response team, was reporting the findings of a committee of experts tracking the evolution of the virus.

Their conclusions will come as a relief to countries such as Denmark, where the BA.2 variant of Omicron has circulated widely.
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