Not yet clear if Omicron causes more severe disease, WHO says

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The WHO has said that it is not yet clear if the new variant is more transmissible compared with other SARS-CoV-2 variants or whether it causes more severe disease.

“Preliminary data suggests that there are increasing rates of hospitalization in South Africa, but this may be due to increasing overall numbers of people becoming infected, rather than a result of specific infection with Omicron,” it said.

Members of UN health agency reached a draft consensus on the future pandemic treaty as UK says it will call urgent G7 meeting over variant.

Member states of the World Health Organization (WHO) have reached a tentative consensus to negotiate a future agreement on preventing pandemics, bridging the gap between sides led by the European Union and  United States, diplomats have said.

The draft resolution, hammered out in negotiations over the weekend, will be presented for adoption to health ministers at the WHO’s three-day special assembly that opens on Monday, they said.

The diplomatic breakthrough came amid growing international concern over the Omicron variant.



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