As Omicron becomes the buzz word of the world, here’s everything you need to know to be prepared and calm for the latest COVID-19 variant.
What Do We Know About The Omicron Variant?
Also known as the SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.529, Omicron has been deemed as a “variant of concern” by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Omicron variant cases were first reported in South Africa, and now has been detected in Australia, including our first community case in NSW, which was reported on the 30th November.
As the variant makes its way across the world, The WHO is now looking to answer three key questions:
- Whether this variant actually spreads faster than others;
- whether it’s evading immune responses; and
- whether it causes more serious disease than other COVID-19 variants
Experts are predicting that we will have the answers to these questions by mid-to-late November, as scientists work to understand the new variant.
Can Rapid Antigen Tests Detect The Omicron Variant?
Short answer: Yes, results from Rapid Antigen Tests stocked by Rapid Proof have been analysed across variants with no change in accuracy.
Long answer: Similarly to when the Delta variant emerged, both Hough Pharma and Roche Diagnostics are conducting additional clinical tests in the coming days and weeks to validate this.
Currently, patients infected by the novel coronavirus are the main source of infection.
Asymptomatic infected people can also be an infectious source. Based on the current epidemiological investigation, the incubation period is 1 to 14 days, mostly 3 to 7 days.
As one of Australia’s leading independent distributors of SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Self Tests, we know how important having rapid tests are to keep businesses running during these turbulent times. We are fully stocked, working diligently to secure stock for our customers.
Why is Omicron Concerning?
The arrival of a new variant does not mean it’s a time to panic.
But, it is important to be aware and prepared!
The WHO is investigating the new variant with a sharp eye, as the discovery of the Omicron variant has coincided with a spike in South African cases — a more than 1,400 percent increase over the past two weeks.
But remember - correlation does not mean causation. As scientists work to get the answers to those key questions, keep calm and stock up on rapid tests so you can continue to enjoy the festive season with peace of mind.
Determine your infection status with a high level of accuracy and precision with Rapid Proof TGA-Approved Tests.
Could Omicron trigger another Delta-style surge in Australia?
It’s really too early to speculate. We just don’t know enough about this variant.
So, don’t jump the gun and cancel your Christmas travel plans - the key to the Omicron puzzle is to be prepared!
Have tests handy and available for friends, family, and employees to use to quickly determine in 15 minutes whether you may be infected with COVID-19 from the comfort of your home.
Rapid Antigen Tests are still a quick and easy way to test for COVID-19 across variants, which can then be confirmed with PCR tests.