Omi Keron's "stress response" will the future anti-epidemic normal?

  The developments related to Omi Keron are being updated globally.

On November 24, South Africa reported to WHO for the first time the discovery of a new variant of the new coronavirus B.1.1.529.

Less than two days later, the World Health Organization defined it as the fifth "variant of concern" after "Delta", named after the Greek letter "O" and pronounced "Omi Keron".

On November 30th, WHO's latest weekly epidemiological report statistics show that Omi Keron variants have appeared in 19 countries and regions, covering five continents in the world.

On the same day, the Netherlands reported that the Omi Keron variant had entered Europe before the first case was reported in South Africa, and the transmission timeline of the variant had been moved forward.

  The WHO has previously stated on many occasions that the mutation of the new coronavirus is generally accelerating, and existing evidence shows that new mutant strains have increased the global spread of the new crown pneumonia epidemic.

According to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, “Many people may think that the new crown epidemic is almost dealt with, but it is not over with us.”

  The National Public Radio (NPR) reported on November 29 that Omi Keron is the latest evidence that the new crown pandemic is far from over.

This means that the new coronavirus is likely to continue to mutate. The "stress response" that countries around the world have in the face of Omi Keron this time may become a preview of the normalized anti-epidemic in the future.

The reaction speed of all parties has increased significantly

  It has been nearly two years since the outbreak of the new crown pneumonia epidemic. What is gratifying is that the anti-epidemic fatigue caused by the long-term fight against the epidemic has not slowed down the response speed of the governments of various countries in response to Omi Keron.

At present, at least 44 countries and regions have imposed travel restrictions on the African countries that first reported the variant; Israel, Morocco, and Japan have successively announced the closure of borders, banning all foreign travelers from entering, and Morocco has even included its citizens as a "closed" The scope of the ban on the country.

More countries have upgraded their epidemic prevention and control measures.

  The rapid sounding of the Omi Keron alarm is related to the rapid determination of the risk of its spread by the World Health Organization.

The action of marking the mutant virus as the highest level of concern "mutant strain of concern" took 72 days for WHO to evaluate the mutant strain of "delta". This time it only took less than two days to face Omi Keron. .

Some analysts pointed out that this shows that people's understanding of the new coronavirus is gradually deepening.

  The WHO issued a document on November 29, stating that the risk of the Omi Keron strain causing a surge in infections worldwide is "very high" and may cause "serious consequences" in some areas.

Although there is "considerable uncertainty" in this mutant strain, preliminary evidence shows that mutations in this strain may make it immune escape and increase its transmission ability.

However, the WHO has so far received no reports of deaths related to the Omi Keron strain.

Should you panic about Omi Keron?

  According to the WHO report, there is currently no systematic research data on the transmission, pathogenicity, risk of secondary infection, and immune escape ability of Omi Keron variants in the world.

There is currently no authoritative conclusion on issues that people are concerned about, such as the reason for the emergence of Ome Keron and the immune escape ability of existing vaccines.

  To a certain extent, information has fallen into a vacuum, which has exacerbated the spread of panic and suspicion, and the financial market has responded most directly.

After the WHO released relevant news on November 26, the three major stock indexes of the New York stock market in the United States all fell more than 2% that day, and the major stock indexes of European and Asian stock markets also fell significantly.

International oil prices, which the US government could not shake even after releasing oil reserves, fell by more than 10% that day.

U.S. foreign exchange trading platform Tampas said that investors are worried that the new variant of the new crown virus will derail the global economic recovery, causing major global stock markets from Asia to Europe and the United States to plummet.

  The actual negative impact of the new variant of the new crown strain is still to be further observed and studied.

In an interview with the media, the South African resident who first reported the Omi Keron mutant said that there was no panic caused by the emergence of the virus, and it has remained stable so far.

South Africa’s Health Minister Fahra said on November 29 that there is no need to panic about Omi Keron, because he has encountered other COVID-19 mutations before.

  In addition, although cases of Omi Keron mutant strains have appeared in many countries in a short period of time, WHO pointed out in a report on November 30 that the main strain currently circulating globally is still "Delta", and other mutant strains The prevalence rate continues to decline.

Among the 839,119 viral gene sequence samples collected in the past 60 days, 99.8% of the samples were the "Delta" strain, and the Omi Keron strain accounted for less than 0.1%, with only 159.

  According to the clinical observations of many medical experts, patients infected with Omi Keron strain usually have mild symptoms and almost no severe symptoms.

South African doctor Uben Pillay said at a press conference on November 29 that most of the patients who have recently seen symptoms have flu-like symptoms, such as dry cough, fever, and limb pain, but the number of hospitalized cases has not increased significantly.

Amon, director of the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention, also mentioned on November 30 that, as of that day, 10 member states across Europe had reported 42 cases of Omikron infection, and 6 suspected cases. Most of these cases have been reported. Travel history in African countries; so far, all infected people have only mild or asymptomatic symptoms, and no severe cases or deaths.

  Most of the parties concerned are cautiously optimistic about the effectiveness of the existing vaccine on Omi Keron.

Sumia Swaminesen, the chief scientist of the WHO, pointed out that it should be assumed that existing vaccines will provide some protection in the face of Omi Keron-even if this protection is not that strong.

Salim Abdul Karim, a senior health expert in South Africa, also pointed out that based on the current understanding, the existing new crown vaccine may be equally effective against the Omi Kiron strain, especially in reducing hospitalization cases and severely ill patients. There is still a high level of effectiveness.

Global coordination and cooperation in the fight against the epidemic is still insufficient

  In view of the fact that vaccination against the new crown is still considered to be one of the most effective tools to combat mutant strains, WHO once again urges 194 members to accelerate the vaccination of new crowns, especially to increase the vaccination rate of high-risk groups.

At the special meeting of the World Health Assembly held on November 29, the topic of "vaccine equity" was once again highlighted.

  WHO Director-General Tedros Tedros said on the same day that the emergence of Omi Keron mutants shows that the virus is constantly searching for weaknesses in the global epidemic prevention front-it has found this breakthrough in the African continent where the vaccination rate is less than 7%.

The WHO and scientists have long warned that as long as people in most parts of the world are not vaccinated, the new coronavirus will continue to multiply and evolve and produce new mutations.

Tan Desai also pointed out that more than 80% of the world's vaccines are sent to the Group of 20 (G20) countries, and low-income countries—most of which are in Africa—receive only 0.6% of all vaccines.

Alazia, the co-chair of the African Union Vaccine Delivery Program, said that developed countries are responsible for the emergence of Omi Keron, because the world cannot distribute the new crown vaccine fairly and quickly. This is the result of rich countries snapping up and hoarding vaccines.

  The insufficiency of global coordination and cooperation directly explains why when the mutant strains suddenly struck, countries all over the border fell like "birds of fright."

The WHO warned on November 30 that a comprehensive travel ban will not prevent the international spread of the mutant strain of the new crown virus, Omi Keron, and will only impose a heavy burden on people's lives and livelihoods, which will adversely affect global anti-epidemic efforts.

The South African government has twice expressed its dissatisfaction with travel bans issued by other countries or regions, believing that it has been punished for quickly reporting new mutant strains.

Tedros urged countries to remain calm and respond "rationally" to Omi Keron.

  Our newspaper, Beijing, December 2nd

  China Youth Daily, China Youth Daily reporter Ma Ziqian Source: China Youth Daily