Geert Vanden Bossche: To all those who believe Omicron is signaling the transition of the pandemic into becoming endemic (endemicity). No, it’s not and here’s why

Back in July 2021, many scientists had the ill-founded view that the C-19 pandemic was dying out and entering an endemic state. Based on my understanding of the interplay between the virus and the immune system, I knew that this was not going to be the case and reacted immediately to this misinterpretation (https://www.voiceforscienceandsolidarity.org/scientific-blog/a-last-word-of-caution-to-all-those-pretending-the-covid-19-pandemic-is-toning-down). Once again, many scientists find themselves with the belief that the emergence of the Omicron variant announces the end of the pandemic and the virus’ transition into endemicity. Their prediction is largely based upon the initial observation that Omicron seems to be causing rather mild disease symptoms which they interpret as being indicative of a virus that—although more infectious—is now becoming less virulent and, therefore, increasingly featuring endemic behavior. I am afraid that once again, I don’t agree—a pandemic can only be tamed by herd immunity. Given the high vaccine coverage rates in most industrialized countries, we have generated anything but herd immunity. I also have yet to hear any compelling evidence concerning significant mutations in the genes that determine SARS-CoV-2’s virulence. Perhaps we should think twice before making statements that are not supported by immunological evidence.

To all those who believe Omicron is signaling the transition of the pandemic into endemicity

Why is this so hard for health officials to understand? ABN

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