Omicron strain spread might lead to end of Covid-19 pandemic, believes expert
Moscow/UNI/Sputnik: The spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant may result in the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, the professor of Russia's Gamaleya National Research Center of Epidemiology told Sputnik Radio.
"Delta will go away, and this virus might take its place, but the pandemic will be not that dangerous. Now, around 3% die, and with this strain [Omicron], if it really spreads, the pathogenicity is likely to decrease. If coronavirus is comparable in lethality to influenza, then we will consider the pandemic to be over. The pandemic has a chance of ending with Omicron," Anatoly Altshtein said.
The expert added that the strain will not spread widely before the New year. Omicron does not provoke serious course of the disease, according to the scientific data.
"However, the future can undermine my hypothesis, because the virus has not probably reached the elderly yet," Altshtein stressed.
Last week, the World Health Organization identified the new Omicron strain of the coronavirus, first reported in South Africa, as one of concern.