Omicron Showing “Mild Symptoms” Says Doctor Who First Discovered Strain – No Need For Alarm Yet

In Brief

  • The Facts:
    • Dr. Barry Schoub has stated that the cases of Omicron being tracked in South Africa are all fairly mild so far.

    • Dr. Angelique Coetzee, who practices on the ground in SA, has stated the same, claiming there hasn't been a hospitalization yet.

  • Reflect On:
    • Are some countries and politicians using Omicron to politicize and push vaccination campaigns?

    • Is it seen as another opportunity to use fear to attain compliance?

    • Is it time for more calm, balanced and open discussions around COVID without all of the fear and hysteria?

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Dr. Barry Schoub, chairman of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Vaccines, has admitted that the new Omicron strain of COVID has been spreading very rapidly, but that the severity of disease is mild and nothing to be alarmed about just yet. He added that it was “the early days” and this could of course change in time.

This comes in contrast to knee-jerk hysteria being spread by mainstream media, politicians, and voices like Anthony Fauci.

Global News in Canada said, Scientists worried Omicron could be the worst COVID-19 variant yet” while CNN stating, “Omicron concerns should spur millions of unvaccinated Americans to get their Covid shots, experts say”

Multiple countries around the world have banned travel to and from South Africa, and New York State has declared a state of emergency even without a single detected case.

This morning, Schoub, who first sounded the alarm about the new strain and who is an advisor to the South Africa government for COVID-19, said that symptoms linked to the Omicron coronavirus variant have been mild so far.

“The cases that have occurred so far have all been mild cases, mild-to-moderate cases, and that’s a good sign” [adding that it was still early days and nothing was certain yet].

Barry Schoub, chairman of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Vaccines

He followed up by saying their hospital surveillance programs are not showing any uptick in hospitalizations yet. He did recommend people in South Africa continue distancing measures and he hopes to see an uptick in vaccination rates.

Dr. Angelique Coetzee, chair of the South African Medical Association, has agreed with Schoub’s assesment about mild symptoms associated with Omicron.

She said that a number of healthy young men turned up at her clinic “feeling so tired.” About half were unvaccinated. “Their symptoms were so different and so mild from those I had treated before,” she said. “Other symptoms included sore muscles and a slight cough,” Coetzee added.

“There are no prominent symptoms. Of those infected, some are currently being treated at home.”

Dr. Angelique Coetzee

In an interview with BBC Andrew Marr Show, Coetzee said,

“What we are seeing clinically in South Africa and remember, I’m at the epicenter, that’s where I’m practicing, is extremely mild.” […] We haven’t admitted anyone” [to the hospital with the new variant] I spoke to other colleagues of mine: the same picture.”

Dr. Angelique Coetzee

When asked whether people were panicking unecessarily she said,

“I think you already have it there in your country, and don’t know it. And yes, I woud say at this stage definietely. But two weeks from now, who knows maybe it will be different.”

Dr. Angelique Coetzee

Since the panic around Omicron began, vaccine manufacturers have said they will now focus on creating a new set of vaccines for the variant and could have them ready in 100 days. This comes off the back of news that vaccine efficacy is dramatically waning over time.

What our world requires is calm, balanced conversations that provide full context around COVID-19. Even though calls for everyone to get vaccinated as a result of Omicron are being made, they do not align with the science of waning vaccine efficacy and the potential rate of vaccine injury. A more nuanced perspective is needed.

First off, since vaccines do not stop transmission or infection, they more closely resemble a symptom management medication. Should we be mandating a medication?

Secondly, young people may be at greater risk from vaccination than COVID, effectively making it nonsensical for them to be vaccinated. This discussion needs to be had and isn’t being had honestly.

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