The global Covid cases have witnessed a sharp rise of 80 per cent in the last month, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). The rise in Covid cases is due to the new sub-variant EG.5.
The new sub-variant has been designated as a variant of interest by the world health body.
The WHO in its weekly update said that nations reported 1.5 million new cases from July 10 to August 6, almost an 80 per cent increase to last month.
Omicron sub-variant EG.5.1 won't cause high risk infection
The new subvariant of Omicron, EG.5.1, which is more transmissible, yet is less likely to worsen Covid infection, unlike previous variants that increased ICU admissions and also led to death, according to global scientists.
As cases rise globally, the World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday designated EG.5.1, nicknamed Eris, as a "variant of interest". The global health stated that the sub-variant was first reported on February 17.
While EG.5 may fuel increases in cases, the WHO said it poses a low risk to public health in comparison with other omicron descendants because there is no evidence it is causing more-severe disease.
Dr Dan Barouch, director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, US, said there is no evidence that EG.5 infections cause more severe illness than other omicron sub variants, ABC news reported.
EG.5 has likely evolved to become more transmissible than its predecessors, however, as evidenced by its prevalence, Barouch said. But he suggested that widespread immunity from a combination of vaccinations and past infections should keep most people safe from severe illness.
"Collectively, available evidence does not suggest that EG.5 has additional public health risks relative to the other currently circulating Omicron descendent lineages," the WHO said in a risk evaluation.
"While EG.5 has shown increased prevalence, growth advantage, and immune escape properties, there have been no reported changes in disease severity to date," it added.
EG.5.1 has been detected in about 51 countries in total, including South Korea, Japan, Canada, Australia, Singapore, France, Portugal and Spain.