The South African Medical Research Council is warning against reading too much into early Omicron reports and urges people to get their vaccinations.
It says early data is based on a very small number of patients.
“Vaccination is still our only serious protection against it and if we had a higher rate of vaccination then we would see even fewer admissions,” he said.
“So I don’t think we should for a moment think that our hospitals are not going to be overwhelmed, they will be, because remember in past waves people could not get a hospital bed and so if we have fewer admissions in this wave, I can tell you that those beds that become available are going to be rapidly taken up by people who could not get a hospital bed before. We should still prepare for a rough time in this fourth wave.”