World passes 300 million COVID cases as omicron breaks records | The Japan Times

In the past seven days, 34 countries have recorded their highest number of weekly cases since the start of the pandemic, including 18 nations in Europe and seven in Africa, according to an AFP count based on official figures.

While far more contagious than previous coronavirus variants, omicron appears to cause less severe illness than its predecessors.

Even as it spurred the world to record 13.5 million cases in the last week alone — 64% higher than the previous seven days — the global average of deaths dropped 3%.

France’s public health authority said Friday that the risk of hospitalization was about 70% lower for omicron, citing data from the U.S., the U.K., Canada and Israel.

However with a global average of 2 million new cases being detected daily, experts warn the sheer numbers threaten to overwhelm health systems.

World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that omicron should not be categorized as mild, as it “is hospitalizing people and it is killing people.”

Source: World passes 300 million COVID cases as omicron breaks records | The Japan Times