Not only J&K, there are indications that all governments across the country have learnt valuable lessons in preparedness from the nearly two-year-long confrontation with the pathogen.
Despite measures the variant has dispersed to some states or UTs. Some of the alarm is understandable. But given the data about the variant doesn’t yet convey the magnitude of the threat it poses, the best recourse would be to remain unflinching about Covid protocols while the scientists and medical experts do their job.
Health officials have confirmed a number of infections from the Omicron variant in India, around fortnight after the World Health Organization designated it as a variant of concern (VOC). The extent of the transmission is still evolving. So far no case has been confirmed in J&K or Ladakh. There is no room for complexity either, considering what has been seen in South Africa, where the variant seems to be spreading rapidly.
It is also true that there is little known about how significant a threat Omicron poses besides being readily transmissible. It is not known if this variant leads to more severe, or milder, illness and it will take weeks before one of the most crucial questions is answered: How does it affect people who have had a past infection, vaccine shots, or both?
United States health officials said that while the omicron variant is rapidly spreading, early indications suggest it may be less dangerous than delta, which continues to drive a surge of hospitalizations globally.
President Joe Biden’s chief medial adviser, Dr Anthony Fauci has said that scientists need more information before drawing conclusion’s about omicron’s severity.
It is also true that undue alarm will only serve to create a distraction at a time when the focus needs to be on scientific evidence but there is need for covid-19 appropriate behavior as been rightly asked to be adhered to by the officials given the fact that WHO has said that measures that work again delta variant work against omicron also.
So, while authorities have done well to bolster surveillance at airports, they must also make sure that there is no let-up in the general levels of testing and contact tracing besides compliance to CAB.