Europe has become the virus epicenter of the world while South Africa has detected the deadliest variant so far. Even vaccines are failing the world.
- Most transmissible variant of COVID-19 discovered in South Africa, mutating at “unusual pace”.
- Europe become the virus epicenter of world, Belgium records its first case of mutation from SA.
- Vaccines fail the world as depleting antibodies wane the immunity among vaccinated population.
- Rich nations blatantly hoard vaccines leading to new covid variant that might turn into fourth wave.
COVID-19 outbreak has once again created a turbulent state throughout the world as the new and most contagious variant ever has been reported in Africa. Medical experiments have discovered the case of “unusual mutation” of new variant B. 1. 1529 name Omicron and so far, more than 100 cases have been recorded in the country. After the alarm bells rang throughout the world, EU nations are already prompting a travel ban from the nation, fearing the high transmissibility of the virus.
U.K., Germany, Italy and France have so far suspended flights from South African nations. Meanwhile, India has not imposed a travel ban but is highly cautious of passengers from Botswana, South Africa and Hong Kong.
The new variant found in SA is spreading at an unprecedented speed. The number of daily cases in the country have increased ten folds since the beginning of the month following which, the World Health Organization (WHO) is to convene an emergency meeting today.
While European continent had already become the epicenter of the deadly COVID-19 outbreak, matters will seemingly get worse from here. Belgium On Friday recorded its first case of the new variant among an unvaccinated person.
Israel too has declared the first case of new variant on Friday followed by few more after which, the authorities have declared the matter “a serious concern”.
So what exactly are the reasons behind the remerging cases that might be indicating towards a massive forth wave?
What are the reasons behind remerging cases of COVID-19 worldwide?
While it can never be accurately predicted as to what is causing the massive rise in daily cases and deaths due to virus outbreak, there are still some valid explanations.
Vaccine hoarding by first world nations
Rising count in South Africa is not something that the experts and governments of first world countries didn’t see coming. WHO repeatedly warned U.S., U.K. and other rich nations of being careful of hoarding vaccines.
In the U.S. more than 83% of people aged 75 and above are fully vaccinated, followed by 88% aged 65-74, 76% aged 50-64 and 69% aged 40-49. Majority of nations in Europe too have achieve the vaccination rate close to 65-70%.
However, vaccinating the first world nations was never enough. Underdeveloped nations like that in South Africa are easy targets for becoming the virus epicenter given poor healthcare facilities, no resources and deplorable hygiene. This is why rising cases in South Africa are a matter of major concern given that not much can be done by the governments of these nations.
U.S. has only distributed 25% of promised doses to the poorest nations
A report by Al Jazeera revealed that by the end of 2021, rich nations of the world will have a surplus stock of whopping 1.2 billion COVID vaccines. This is when the just 23.8% of population of South Africa is fully vaccinated. In Zimbabwe, matters are worse with mere 19% population being fully vaccinated. Numbers sound alarmingly unfortunate for nations like Lesotho, Eswatini and Namibia where just 27%, 22% and 14% population having received a single dose respectively.
The G7 countries in June promised to distribute the surplus vaccines to poor nations. In addition, a President Biden chaired committee decided to distribute 40% of its vaccines to 92 poorest countries by December. The month is almost about to end and the U.S. has only distributed 25% of the decided number of vaccines to the poor nations.
As for the developed nations of the world, the story is a bit different. The vaccination rate in the rich nations of the world might be falling in place, but it can’t work for too long. The medical evidences have proven that the vaccine is only effective till a certain period of time. There is an urgent need to speed up the distribution of booster shots as the antibody levels among the vaccinated people worldwide might be running out.
Authorities in U.K. are urging the eligible vaccinated people to get the booster shots by December 11. In the U.S. too, medical authorities have given the booster shots a green flag following which the distribution efforts have been fueled by Biden administration.
Further, experts have pointed that the countries with Delta variant outbreak, especially European countries, will have to achieve 90-95% vaccination rate in order to achieve a stable immunity.
One cannot ignore the fact that the holiday season is here and travel and shopping have resumed in full swing. Unprecedented abandonment of social distancing norms and ease in travel restrictions are to be blamed for the worsening condition of Europe. This is paired with the election season in many countries where leaders don’t want to compromise votes by keeping people at home.
After massive rise in daily cases and deaths once again, Austria has decided to undergo another complete lockdown. Netherlands on the other hand is resorting to partial lockdown for three weeks starting from Nov 13.