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Omicron variant: what you need to know and how to limit the spread

Started by Geoffw, December 05, 2021, 04:49:46 pm

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Omicron variant: what you need to know and how to limit the spread. 

Rules around face masks and vaccines have changed, and people are being encouraged to double down on protective measures

The emergence of the new Omicron Covid variant has sparked concern worldwide due to the high number of mutations it has compared with other variants we've seen so far.  In the UK, face masks and travel testing rules have been tightened up or reintroduced, and vaccine boosters are now being offered to all over 18's, with a shorter three month gap between second and third doses. The reason this variant is attracting so much attention is that the number of mutations could have an impact on how the Omicron variant responds to vaccines, how easily transmissible it is, and whether it causes more severe illness. Crucially, we don't know much yet, but it's positive that a lot of work is already underway to understand more about Omicron and to try and limit the spread while scientists look into it. For now, it's important to maintain or step up measures to keep yourself and others as safe as possible, and be aware of changing rules. We round up the key things you need to know below.