The devastation caused by the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India is still fresh in our minds; a new and more deadly strain of COVID-19 virus omicron has hit some parts of the world. Some experts have to say that this strain is highly transmissible however; Scientists in South Africa and around the world are conducting research to better understand many aspects of Omicron.

Omicron COVID-19 virus was discovered earlier this month in Botswana and has since been found in a traveller arriving in Hong Kong from South Africa. Researchers are also trying to figure out whether the variant can evade immune responses triggered by vaccines and whether it causes more or less severe disease than other variants. Keeping in mind the havoc of the second wave of COVID-19, India is on high alert as many countries have reported omicron virus variant cases. India has already announced new travel guidelines to stem the spread of Omicron Virus in India

Since it is a new strain, we don’t know whether it would cause more or less damage compared to delta variants of second wave but we must accept that the COVID-19 outbreak is not over yet and it has the potential to become endemic, causing clusters of cases throughout the year. So question is what should we do to tackle this virus when we don’t know the symptoms of omicron strain?

Aakash Healthcare Super speciality Hospital, New Delhi doctors advise to keep following the COVID appropriate behavior if we have to avoid another terrible disaster.

Omicron virus Symptoms:

There is currently no evidence that omicron virus variant symptoms differ from those associated with other variants. The symptoms of COVID associated with the new omicron variant have been described as "extremely mild" by the South African doctor who first spotted the covid-19 omicron variant.

Omicron virus treatment:

Corticosteroids will continue to be effective in the treatment of COVID-19 patients but have to be used judiciously. Other treatments will be evaluated to see if they are still as effective in the Omicron variant due to changes to parts of the virus. Vaccines continue to be critical in reducing severe disease and death, including against the dominant circulating variant, Delta. Current vaccines are still effective against severe disease and death.

Preventive measures to reduce the spread of omicron COVID-19 virus:

  • Get COVID-19 vaccination as soon as possible - Vaccines are the best line of defence against Covid-19 infection and will aid in the prevention of the third wave of Corona in India. The more people who get vaccinated, the better the chances of lowering the infectivity rate.
  • Try to avoid social gatherings - It's understandable that we've all been forced to stay inside and avoid social interaction for nearly two years. However, if we are to completely eradicate this virus, we must first stop it from spreading. This means we'll have to avoid social gatherings for the foreseeable future. Even if you are fully vaccinated, adhering to the protocol and avoiding social gatherings will be beneficial. Maintain social distance when you're outside.
  • Adhere to COVID-19-appropriate behaviour - Even if the Covid-19 vaccination protects you from a severe infection, people can still infect others, particularly the vulnerable population. Remember the following points:
    1. Wearing masks should also be encouraged for children over the age of five.
    2. Outside the home, a six-foot social distance should always be maintained.
    3. One should sanitize one’s hand every 5-6 hours or whenever goes out.
    4. When leaving the house, masks should be worn at all times.
  • Don't take any unnecessary risks - The world has been dealing with a pandemic that is far from over since early 2020. If you let down your guard now, it could be fatal. It is entirely up to you to ensure your own safety. There are no incentives to take risks. The most valuable prize would be to live when it's all over.
  • Visit Hospitals only in unavoidable condition - If all precautions are taken, this virus can be treated at home. Overcrowding hospitals serves no purpose unless the situation deteriorates. It's safer to isolate yourself at home.

When we are careless, the virus spreads, as we have seen in the previous two waves. It is completely avoidable if we focus on taking adequate precautions. The mask has undoubtedly saved the day. People, on the other hand, have remained careless, making themselves easy prey.

Don't take everything you hear at face value. There is no evidence that children will be particularly vulnerable to this new strain OMICRON COVID-19 virus.  Vaccination remains the core weapon to counter the COVID-19 virus as it creates the herd immunity. Adhering to the rules is by far the most effective weapon against this virus. We will need to be vigilant and cautious in our approach until the majority of Indians have been immunized. As all COVID restrictions have been lifted, we must keep an eye on things for the next two - three months and implement COVID 3rd wave precautions.

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and are concerned about COVID-19 treatment, book an appointment at Aakash Healthcare in Delhi today. Our Covid-19 experts are available 24/7 to advise you on COVID 3rd wave risk factors and the availability of COVID vaccine in Delhi.

with Dr. Rakesh Pandit


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