‘Acute phase’ of COVID-19 ends in 2022 despite Omicron – Community News

‘Acute phase’ of COVID-19 ends in 2022 despite Omicron

  • Bill Gates said in his blog that he believes the “acute phase” of the pandemic will end in 2022.
  • He said the world is better prepared to deal with potentially bad variants than at any other point in the pandemic to date.
  • It comes as the Omicron variant, which he described as “concerning,” spreads worldwide.

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Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates said he is hopeful that the critical phase of the COVID-19 pandemic will end in 2022.

“It may be foolish to make another prediction, but I think the acute phase of the pandemic will end sometime in 2022,” Gates wrote in an annual review, published Tuesday on his GatesNotes blog.

The billionaire said the end of the pandemic is not as close as he hoped because of the Delta variant and struggles to get people fully vaccinated.

And while “there is no doubt that the Omicron variant is of concern,” he said, the speed of detecting new variants, combined with developments in vaccines and antiviral drugs, has led him to hope that COVID-19 will become an endemic disease by 2022. would become.

“The world is better prepared to deal with potentially bad variants than at any other time in the pandemic to date,” he said. “We are in a much better position to make updated vaccines when they are needed,” he added.

His comments come as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, also known as B.1.1.529, is spreading around the world.

Scientists and drug companies are racing to find out how Omicron behaves and how well vaccines will endure. The variant is of concern because of the large number of mutations.

Gates said much more information about the Omicron variant — such as how well existing vaccines or previous infections protect against it — will be available soon as researchers, including those who support the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, work to learn more about it. to come.

In his review, Gates said vaccines and antivirals could help reduce the lethality of COVID-19 in the future.

“Communities will still see an occasional outbreak, but new drugs will be available that can take care of most cases and hospitals will be able to handle the rest,” he wrote.

“In a few years, I hope the only time you really have to think about the virus is when you get your joint COVID and flu vaccine every fall,” he said.