Quebec Standard

Thursday, November 30, 2023

U.K. considers booster doses vital for protection against new COVID-19 variant Omicron

Boris Johnson advised U.K. to take booster shots as a protection against 'Tidal Wave'

After the first death reported in the United Kingdom of the variation, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson worried of a ‘tidal wave’ of omicron coronavirus infections and recommended everyone to get a booster shot.

Long lineups formed Monday at vaccination clinics across England as people obeyed the government’s appeal for all adults to get booster doses to protect themselves against the omicron version, following the death of the first patient infected with the virus in the United Kingdom.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said during a televised broadcast late Sunday that everyone aged 18 and up might be provided a third vaccine dosage by December 31 — less than three weeks away and a month sooner than the previous deadline.

“In our war with the new strain, omicron,” Johnson added, “we are now confronting an emergency.” Boosters, he claimed, would “reinforce our wall of vaccination protection” against an omicron “tidal wave.”

Researchers in South Africa, where omicron was initially discovered, believe the variety may produce less severe disease than delta; however, they caution that it is too early to say for sure. Health officials across the globe have a careful eye on Britain to see what an omicron spike looks like in a country with a population that is older and better vaccinated than South Africa’s.

Omicron instances are doubling every two to three days in the United Kingdom, according to health officials, and it will overtake delta as the main strain within days. However, it’s uncertain if the anticipated wave of infections would overwhelm the country’s healthcare infrastructure.

About ten persons in the United Kingdom had COVID-19 caused by omicron, and Johnson verified the country’s first COVID-19 fatality with the variety on Monday.

Source: CBC News

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