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expert reaction to new SPI-M-O consensus statement on COVID-19 from 15 December 2021, published on Saturday

SPI-M-O have published their latest consensus statement on COVID-19.


An anonymous expert said:

“The consensus statement from SPI-M reflects the seriousness of the epidemiological picture currently being presented by data relating to the omicron variant.

“The proportion of people who become infected who then go on to require hospital treatment remains the biggest unknown. We do not expect to see usable information on this for at least a week, and maybe longer as we need to observe people passing through the whole course of their infection. The reports of reduced severity from South Africa, while interesting in an academic sense, are not directly transferable to a UK context (particularly because of the much younger demographic found is South Africa). In early reports from the UK it is not yet possible to distinguish between the severity of delta and that of omicron.

“It is highly likely that the vaccination and in particular the booster program will reduce the severity for those people who take up the offer. In time, should enough people obtain third doses, the vaccination program  will also slow the epidemic and reduce the peak but the full development of such immunity will take longer than the omicron epidemic is currently likely to give us.”



All our previous output on this subject can be seen at this weblink:



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