The WHO Says Conditions Are 'Ideal' For More COVID Variants To Emerge After Omicron

The end of the pandemic might not be that close after all.

Global Staff Writer
The WHO Says Conditions Are 'Ideal' For More COVID Variants To Emerge After Omicron

Many have been holding onto the hope that Omicron is the beginning of the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the World Health Organization says that's probably not the case.

Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the WHO, said at a meeting with the WHO's executive board that it should not be assumed that the world is "in the endgame."

According to Tedros, although the end of COVID-19 as a global health emergency is within reach, certain strategies and tools are required to get there. There are still many parts of the world where vaccination rates are low, he said.

Tedros also warned against believing that Omicron will be the last variant.

"On the contrary, globally the conditions are ideal for more variants to emerge," he said during the meeting.

However, that doesn't mean the world will be in pandemic mode forever.

Tedros explained that there are still steps all countries can take towards ending the pandemic, and it involves something that the WHO has been pushing to achieve for a while.

Seventy percent of every country's population must be fully vaccinated by mid-2022, Tedros said, with a focus on those who are most at risk.

Other steps to take include "restoring and sustaining essential health services," as well as ramping up testing globally to keep track of new variants.

But there is "no path out unless we achieve our shared target" of vaccination, Tedros said.

He noted that 85% of Africa's population has yet to receive a first dose of a vaccine.

"We simply cannot end the emergency phase of the pandemic unless we bridge this gap," stressed Dr. Tedros.

Health Canada has a robust website with all the latest information on COVID-19 vaccines and can answer any questions you may have.

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