The European Union Medicines Agency (EUMA) said, that the spread of the “Omicron” mutant is pushing “COVID -19” to turn into an endemic disease that humans can coexist with, although it is still an epidemic at the present time.
The EUMA also expressed doubts about the efficacy of giving a fourth dose of the anti-Corona vaccines to the general population, saying that repeated booster doses are not a “sustainable” strategy.
“No one knows exactly when we will be at the end of the tunnel, but we will get there,” Marco Cavalieri, head of the vaccine strategy at the Amsterdam-based agency, told reporters.
“With increased immunity in the population – and with an Omicron, there will be a lot of natural immunity above vaccination – we will move quickly towards a more endemic scenario,” he added.
Scientists support this belief, as a study in South Africa showed that a wave of infection with the “Omicron” mutant moved “at an unprecedented speed” and caused milder disease than previous strains.
“If this pattern continues and is repeated globally, it is likely that we will see a complete shift in infection and death rates, as this indicates that Omicron may be a precursor to the end of the epidemic phase of the disease, leading to the endemic phase,” the researchers said.
However, Cavalieri stressed that “we should not forget that we are still in a pandemic,” referring to the enormous burden on health care providers from the increase in infections caused by “Omicron”.
“If we have a strategy where we give the boosters every four months, we’re going to end up with potential problems with the immune response, and second of course there’s the risk of burnout in the population as the boosters continue to be given,” Cavalieri explained.