A medical expert has indicated that Thailand will soon face a surge in COVID-19 infections, but says he believes the Omicron coronavirus variant will develop into a live vaccine that provides immunity without the need for booster shots.
Dr Manoon Leechawengwongs, a pulmonary disease expert at Vichaiyut Hospital, recently posted an update on SNS media explaining that the Kingdom will face a new wave of infections that could be the largest in two years. He added that daily cases could number in the tens of thousands, but advised the public not to be too worried about the possibility.
According to Dr Manoon, the Omicron variant has evolved from its predecessors to be better adapted to the human body. Notably, it has a reduced incubation time for faster transmission while also tending to cause milder symptoms akin to the common cold or flu.
The new variant is thought to be evolving along the lines of other known coronavirus strains, such as those that cause the common cold in children. These strains are rarely found in adults as most people develop immunity after contracting these viruses as children.
Dr Manoon believes the Omicron strain will eventually infect everyone, whether they have been vaccinated or not, causing entire populations to achieve herd immunity. He suggests that the variant will operate as a live attenuated vaccine, delivering stronger immunity stimulation than existing COVID vaccines.
The expert noted as well that the outlook for vaccine manufacturers may not be as bright going forward as a consequence of this trend. (NNT)