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Will Omicron Allow Us To Celebrate A Happy New Year In 2022

Will Omicron Allow Us To Celebrate A Happy New Year In 2022

The Coronavirus has followed a very unpredictable trajectory from when it became known to the world. It took the world by surprise in December 2019 when it was first noticed in the Wuhan province of China.

It soon exploded into a fast-spreading infectious disease in the year 2020 and was declared a pandemic. This was followed by prolonged periods of worldwide lockdown and we thought we had defeated the virus. But the Coronavirus rose like a phoenix in 2021, and in an unexpected massive second wave took the world by storm overwhelming the healthcare facilities of the countries around the world.

As we head into 2022, we are witnessing an exact rerun of the situation. So, one question reigning supreme in everyone’s mind is what will the latest variant of the Coronavirus, Omicron, do in the new year? Omicron is the most transmissible variant of the Coronavirus with a doubling time of less than 3 days. It is proving difficult to contain. What will this pandemic look like? What will Omicron do to world? Will it be a repeat of 2021 or will 2022 bring some good news with it?


The Coronavirus has already killed 5.2 million people. At least another 257 million have been infected. Global caseload is rising. The global infection rate is also rising rapidly. Omicron has reached more than 100 countries in the world now.

As of December 18, 2021, more than 500,000 have tested positive everyday. New cases of Covid-19 are being detected, and the reason is Omicron.

The world is failing to contain it. There is a rise in number of hot spots. Leading nations are becoming hotspots. Restrictions are being re-imposed. This variant has reached almost every continent. Vaccines are proving to be less effective against Omicron. There are growing instances of social unrest.

The earlier theory explaining the emergence and spread of Omicron was vaccine inequity. Southern Africa is a case in point, with only 8% immunization against the deadly corona virus.

As a result the virus is mutating very fast and coming out with new variants. But the new infection zones that have emerged in the world are the United States and Europe which are regions with the highest vaccination rates.

US and Europe have the highest vaccine stockpile and yet these places are emerging as the recent hotspots.  More than 1,25,000 Americans are testing positive for Corona every day.

Complacency can be deadly. The variant is spreading fast. There are concerns about how effective vaccines will be going forward with talk of booster shots taking centerstage as far as fighting Omicron is concerned.

It is proving to be a serious challenge to Europe. Lockdowns and restrictions are back in some places. Several European nations have issued orders. A nationwide lockdown has been ordered in the Netherlands. Countries like France, Denmark, Belgium, Germany and the United Kingdom have all re-imposed restrictions.

Crowds are not being allowed to gather in public places. Other countries have put travel restrictions and mask mandates are in place. The western world has had to put up with a dampened Christmas. Germany believes a massive fifth wave is coming.

The reason the west seems so worried is because the scientists believe that the vaccines are not effective against Omicron. Data says most of the existing vaccines will not be able to stop an Omicron infection. Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Sputnik. Some reports say Pfizer and Moderna have a better chance but only when you take a booster. All vaccines have a reduced efficacy against Omicron.

Omicron has had a very negative impact on the stock markets. The Indian markets are in free fall. The bleeding began two weeks ago. The Sensex has fallen continuously, losing almost 3000 points in the last two weeks.

Nifty has lost close to 1000 points in the last two weeks. Less than four months ago, Indian stock markets were at a record high. Foreign investors were pouring money into the Indian stocks.

They bought $9 billion worth of Indian stocks in September this year. In the last few days, investors have lost more than $125 billion in the previous three days.

The Omicron variant ended the bull run. Stock exchanges around the world are counting their losses. All Asian markets are down-China, Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan. American markets are also seeing red. European markets fell the most in three weeks.

When the whole world is struggling to survive and get over the pandemic, pharma companies chase profits. Most of the pharma companies manufacturing vaccines have seen a turnaround in their fortune, and they have posted huge profits by selling the vaccines. Booster shots are a very lucrative idea for the pharma giants.

It looks like an endless cycle of vaccines and boosters, but at this point, people do not have a choice. Omicron is spreading like wildfire, and that is causing unrest.

People have taken to the streets to oppose new restrictions and vaccine mandates. In some instances, the protests have turned violent, and there is increasing violence over pandemic restrictions. Questions are being raised over the efficacy of vaccines.

The list of hotspots is growing exponentially. Lockdowns, a new worrying variant and predictions of new waves—2021 is ending as it began.

All is not lost, and there is hope at the end of the tunnel. We have vaccines, medical technology with us, and experience of the past year to guide us on how to handle the imminent pandemic in 2022.

Virologists, epidemiologists, and other experts from the medical fraternity dealing with the virus predict that Omicron will not kill as many people as the delta variant killed the previous year. It would continue to mutate.

It would continue to infect people, but the pandemic would not be as lethal as it was with the Delta variant. One arrives at this conclusion by accounting for a couple of factors.

The data of patients from Scotland and England show that hospitalizations are far less in the case of Omicron than with the delta variant, and the number of deaths has been significantly less.

 The arrival and easy availability of vaccines have prevented the virus from becoming fatal, and doctors and patients are more confident about dealing with it.

An estimated 4.4 billion jabs have been administered, and around 3.5 billion people have received two doses necessary for complete protection. More than 30 countries have rolled out booster shots. Let us keep our fingers crossed and pray to God for a safe and secure 2022.

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