Can booster shot stop Omicron? Here’s what a new study says

Written by corres2

As the world grapples with ways to stop the Omicron variant of coronavirus from spreading, a new study has thrown light on how effective a booster dose can be. The study has been conducted by the researchers at the Imperial College London.

Also Read | Vaccinating all to get priority over booster dose, says Indian govt

The study said that the booster shot can provide about 85 per cent protection against the fast-spreading variant.

The study is based on the limited data that is available on Omicron, which emerged in South Africa last month and has spread to nearly 80 countries till now.

The same model has suggested a higher effectiveness – about 97 per cent – against the delta variant of coronavirus.

“Integrating immunological model within a model of SARS-CoV-2 transmission, we show that booster doses will be critical to mitigate the impact of future Omicron waves in countries with high levels of circulating virus. They will also be needed in ‘zero-Covid’ countries where there is little prior infection-induced immunity in order to open up safely,” the researchers said in the study.

Omicron has been spreading rapidly across the world. On Friday, Britain reported 3,201 cases of the new variant, the biggest daily increase since Omicron was detected in the country, taking the total such cases to 14,909, according to official figures.

Also Read | Omicron is unstoppable now

The data from UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) also said that the country recorded 93,045 coronavirus cases in the latest 24-hour period, breaking the daily record for the third consecutive day and bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 11,190,354.

New York too reported a one-day record of more than 21,000 infections on Friday as the Omicron variant accelerates its spread across the US.

In a bid to limit disruption, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention backed “test-to-stay” strategies that avoid sending unvaccinated kids home from school. France is curbing New Year’s Eve celebrations as Europe seeks to stem Omicron.

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