Covid-19: WHO surge team deployed to tackle Omicron variant in Gauteng

South Africa is seeing an increase in Covid-19 reinfections in patients contracting Omicron, says scientist.



Reuters file
Reuters file

By Reuters

Published: Thu 2 Dec 2021, 2:38 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Dec 2021, 2:51 PM

The World Health Organization (WHO) is deploying a surge team to South Africa's Gauteng province, epicentre of the outbreak of the new Omicron coronavirus variant, to help with surveillance and contact tracing, it said on Thursday.

The WHO's Regional Emergency Director for Africa, Salam Gueye, also said it was providing technical assistance to boost the production and distribution of medical oxygen in Botswana, where Omicron has also been detected

'South Africa seeing increase in reinfections from Omicron'

South Africa is seeing an increase in Covid-19 reinfections in patients contracting Omicron in a way that it did not experience with previous variants, a microbiologist from the country's National Institute for Communicable Diseases said.

"Previous infection used to protect against Delta but now with Omicron that doesn't seem to be the case," said Professor Anne von Gottberg on Thursday during an online briefing organised by the World Health Organization.


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