Too soon to say Omicron will end pandemic: Fauci

Too soon to say Omicron will end pandemic: Fauci

America’s top infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci has said it is too early to say whether Omicron will bring an end to the COVID-19 pandemic and that there may be another version with a similar vaccine potential.

Speaking at the Davos Agenda virtual event on Monday, Fauci said that “natural vaccination,” or immunity through past infection, may not be as effective as some believe, the Daily Mail reports.

Like Omicron, a new type is likely to emerge in the future that can evade the natural immunity provided by infection with the new strain.

While Omicron causes less severe disease than other types, Fauci said the sheer volume of cases could have a meaningful impact on collective immunity.

“It’s an open question whether or not the Omicron live virus vaccination is going to be what everyone is hoping for, because you have so much variability as new forms emerge,” Fauci was quoted as saying by New York City. Times.

“I expect that to be the case,” he said, “but that will only happen if we don’t find another variant that does away with an immune response.”

Beyond that, Fauci said the evolution of the pandemic is still an open question. “The answer is: we don’t know,” he said.

According to him, the world is still in the first phase of what he regarded as the five stages of the pandemic, the NYT report said.

The first is the “truly pandemic” phase, “where the whole world is really very negatively affected”, followed by recession, containment, eradication and eradication.

He said smallpox is the only infectious human disease that has so far been eradicated, but “that is not going to happen with this virus”.

However, the virus can be endemic like rhinovirus and some upper respiratory infections. This could happen when countries reach the “containment” phase, when the virus becomes a “non-disruptive presence”, he said.

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