The number of deaths remains stable for the moment, but we are concerned about the impact of the new strain on already exhausted and overloaded health systems, the entity’s director general, Tedros Adhanom, told a virtual press conference.
In some countries, coronavirus cases appear to have peaked, giving hope that the worst of this latest wave is over, but none of them are out of the woods yet, he warned.
I remain particularly concerned about many nations that have low rates of vaccination against the pathogen, as people are more at risk of severe illness and death if they are not immunized, he noted.
“Omicron may be less severe, on average, but the narrative that it is a mild disease is misleading, harms the overall response and costs more lives”, said the head of the United Nations health agency.
Make no mistake, it leads to hospitalizations and fatalities, and even less severe cases are flooding health facilities, Adhanom stressed.
The Covid-19 is circulating with too much intensity and many are still vulnerable, he acknowledged, while pointing out that for a good number of states, the next few weeks are still really critical.
He urged everyone to do what they can to reduce the risk of infection, stressing that now is not the time to give up.
We can still significantly reduce the impact of the current wave by sharing and using health tools effectively and by implementing public health and social measures that we know work, he said.