Covid-19: new variants, lull… what are the scenarios envisaged by the WHO for the continuation of the pandemic?

the essential
The World Health Organization anticipates three possible paths for the virus in 2022, including the worst: the arrival of a new variant, more “virulent” than the previous ones.

Last week, more than 10 million people were infected and 45,000 died, according to figures sent to the WHO. But the number is certainly much higher.

“Based on what we now know, the most likely scenario is that the virus will continue to evolve, but the severity of the illness it causes will decrease as the virus continues to evolve. immunity increases thanks to vaccination and infections”, explained its director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, during a press briefing.

Another scenario is that of the appearance of several new variants, but less dangerous. As we have observed since mid-March, new infection peaks may appear.

The worst case scenario

The worst case scenario envisaged by the WHO foresees a new variant more virulent than those which have already caused millions of deaths for more than two years. “Faced with this new threat, the protection of populations, thanks to a previous vaccination or infection, against severe forms of the disease or death will be reduced rapidly”, still according to the director general of the WHO.

This would require a modification of existing vaccines, because the protection of populations would no longer be ensured against a more alarming and transmissible variant than Omicron or BA.2. If this is not the preferred scenario, caution should be exercised.

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