The World Health Organization (WHO) has designated Omicron as a ‘variant of concern.’ It resulted in a fresh wave of Covid-19 in South Africa, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, and other countries. According to predictions, the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus will spread much faster than the original. Although, how quickly Omicron spreads in comparison to Delta is uncertain. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that anyone with Omicron infection can transmit the virus to others, regardless of vaccination status or symptoms. As the Omicron variant disrupts current return-to-office plans, company chiefs are beginning to contemplate different permanent work arrangements for their employees.
Omicron: What makes it Different
The rise in omicron variant infections has generated concerns about the risk of a new wave of coronavirus. It also questions the efficiency of currently available vaccinations. Omicron is thought to be more transmissible than the preceding version. It is more likely to infect a large number of people in a shorter period. When opposed to the Delta version, the symptoms of this variant are milder. However, researchers believe that due to its high rate of transmissibility, it will soon become the dominant variant worldwide. Both Omicron and delta are distinct from one another. Fatigue, joint pain, a cold, and headaches are four prevalent omicron symptoms. These symptoms differ from those of the Delta variant, according to experts. Apart from that, the Omicron lacked the normal indications of Delta, such as loss of smell and taste.
Get back to work from home
Many people were looking forward to returning to work, some for the first time in nearly two years. However, Omicron did not allow them to do so. Many companies in the US, including Jefferies, Goldman Sachs, Chevron, and others, have postponed or modified their January return-to-work plans. Therefore, people are back to remote working. Even the UK government warned employers to allow their workers to work from home until the middle of January in Scotland and England. In India, companies like Infosys, Amazon, Microsoft India are all back with remote working. France too is sailing in the same boat and has made it compulsory for employees to work from home.
Taking precautions at work
The arrival of the Omicron has crushed expectations that the outbreak will be over soon. Businesses are once again considering how to satisfy their tough responsibility of keeping their staff safe while also meeting their commercial needs. Companies can limit the threat and handle the outbreak effectively. However, they need to continue to be smart, agile, and adaptive in their efforts. Make it compulsory for employees to maintain a physical distance of at least 1 meter between themselves. They should ask everyone to wear a well-fitted mask. Promoting hygiene and increasing testing will also allow companies to limit the further transmission of the virus. Also, vaccinate your employees to reduce the impact of the virus.
Controversy surrounding vaccines
There are speculations that vaccination is ineffective. There is a problem because people who are vaccinated are becoming infected with new strains of Covid. However, this is not true at all. The vaccine is 100 percent effective in protecting you from severe disease, hospitalization, and death resulting from Omicron Variant. Therefore, it is important for everyone to vaccinate themselves. Because vaccination is successful, some countries also provide booster doses. Aside from treating patients with the Omicron Virus, scientists are gathering data to see how COVID-19 medications function on the Omicron Variant. They have discovered that some treatments are likely to stay effective in the future, while others may be less effective.
Government actions: let us know what is happening
France reported the highest number of Covid cases in Europe in a single day. Despite the region’s attempts to limit the spread of the newly discovered and more deadly Omicron form, there were 1,79,807 cases reported in a single day. A number of countries, including Greece, France, Italy, England, and Portugal, also saw their daily case count reach an all-time high. French health minister Olivier Véran warned that the country may be seeing as many as 2,50,000 cases each day, while the French Hospital Federation cautioned that the “most difficult weeks are yet to come.”
The British government is enforcing lockdown restrictions in England, which is home to the majority of the UK’s population. Other European countries facing an increase in Omicron cases have already tightened their laws, as have devolved authorities in Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. In a report released on Monday, the CDC stated that the recommended isolation period for people who have the coronavirus but have no symptoms has been reduced by half. However, many medical specialists are criticizing the US government’s decision. The isolation period in the US is now for 5 days.
Fight the virus to help the world
The Omicron is spreading fastly. Although on the bright side, it is thought to be less destructive than the delta variant. If you have previously been infected with COVID-19 or your health conditions make you more susceptible to reinfection, you should follow extra precautions. You can reduce the risk of infection from the new variant. You can do it by following all safety precautions and maintaining hygiene. Also, it is your responsibility to prevent the spread of the virus and convince your peers to follow safety protocols. Take care of your health and help the world in overcoming the crisis.