One person in the UK has died due to the Omicron variant of coronavirus, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said during a visit to a vaccination clinic near Paddington, in west London.
“Sadly, yes Omicron is producing hospitalizations and sadly, at least one patient has been confirmed to have died with Omicron. So, I think that this is somehow a milder version of the virus. I think that’s something we need to set on one side and just recognize the sheer pace at which it accelerates through the population. So the best thing we can do is get all our boosters,” he said.
In an urgent televised address on Sunday night, Johnson warned that a “tidal wave” of the highly transmissible variant is on its way.
He announced an enhanced Omicron Emergency Boost campaign to offer a third top-up dose of a Covid-19 vaccine for all adults aged over 18 years.
“I am afraid we are now facing an emergency in our battle with the new variant, Omicron, and we must urgently reinforce our wall of vaccine protection to keep our friends and loved ones safe,” Johnson was quoted as saying by PTI.
UK Health Secretary Sajid Javid reiterated the message on Monday, adding that the Omicron variant is “spreading at a phenomenal rate” and infections are doubling every two to three days. Javid said 10 people were hospitalized in England with the Omicron variant.