COVID-19 Omicron Variant May Not Give Time To Prepare: WHO Experts Warn Tamil Nadu Govt

Chennai: The World Health Organization (WHO) experts, including Chief Scientist Soumya Swaminathan, have warned the Tamil Nadu government against the possibility of a sudden spurt in cases of the highly contagious Omicron variant following inadequate vaccines and lack of Covid-appropriate behaviour during the upcoming festival season.

Swaminathan in a review meeting with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin said the Omicron variant may not give time to prepare for healthcare providers.

The WHO Chief Scientist during the review meeting, also attended by Tamil Nadu Health Minister Ma Subramanian and other state health department officials, warned that the Covid-19 Omicron variant has a high transmission rate and it evades antibodies and immunity.

The experts have amid the Omicron threat cautioned the state government to be prepared with more beds, oxygen cylinders, drugs and testing kits.

READ: No ‘Delmicron’ Variant Yet; Time To Fight Omicron, Say Health Experts

In tune with the same, the state health department will release education materials and media briefs to prevent misinformation.

Meanwhile, the Chief Minister in an official statement appealed to the people to make use of the vaccination facilities through camps across the state, IANS reported.

Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J. Radhakrishnan has also urged the people to celebrate Christmas, New Year and Pongal in a subdued manner.

He has advised that people must try to have online ‘darshans’ and virtual celebrations instead of physical visits to the religious places.

The state government has, however, decided not to impose any fresh restrictions and the existing curbs would continue till December 31.

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