The Omicron variant is significantly less severe than other strains of Covid-19, according to a report from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the agency, the risk of hospitalisation from Omicron was half compared to the risk from the Delta variant, Daily Mail reported. Among people hospitalised, they were 75 per cent less likely to require intensive care, and even the rate of mortality was 91 per cent lower than that of Delta.
While it has long been known by health officials and experts alike that the Omicron variant is not as deadly as its predecessor, it has led to some deaths in the UK, Australia, the US, and India.
Currently, the US is averaging 750,515 new cases every day, the second-highest daily total recorded yet in the pandemic -- only trailing Tuesday's total - with 1,716 deaths being attributed to the virus each day. While the variant has caused cases to triple to record numbers in recent weeks, deaths have not moved at a similar rate.
And the recent 10 per cent uptick in Covid deaths in the US is actually being caused by the Delta variant, not the highly prevalent Omicron strain, CDC chief Rochelle Walensky was quoted as saying at a news conference on Wednesday.
The CDC data also estimates that 98 per cent of active Covid cases in the US are of the Omicron variant. The Delta variant, which dominated the latter half of 2021, is now relegated to only around two percent of cases, the report said.
If the variant spreads rapidly and is unlikely to cause death, it could quickly burn through the population and begin to recede.
Experts and health officials are hopeful that the recent surge caused by the variant is showing signs of burning out, as it could run out of people to infect in the coming weeks, the report said.