To ensure you have a great vacation, don’t stay too far off your mask. That’s WHO advice, and so much for styling on the beach. Driven by the Omicron BA.5 sub-variant, the number of Covid-19 cases in the fifty or so countries of the WHO Europe zone approached 500,000 daily this week, when it was around 150,000. per day at the end of May, according to the organization’s public data.
“As countries across Europe have lifted the social measures that were in place, the virus will circulate at high levels over the summer,” said the organization’s Europe director. UN, Hans Kluge. “The virus is not going to go away just because countries stop monitoring it. It continues to contaminate, it continues to change and it still kills,” he said in a written statement to AFP.
Wearing a mask and isolation remain in order
After hovering around 4,000 to 5,000 deaths per day for much of the winter, the death toll currently remains at a low level of around 500, its summer 2020 level. But almost all countries European countries are showing rising cases, with Portugal, Luxembourg, France, Greece, Cyprus, Germany and Austria currently leading the way with the highest incidence.
“We hope that the extensive vaccination programs that most member states have in place, as well as past infections, will mean that we will avoid the most serious consequences that we saw earlier in the pandemic,” says Hans. Kluge. “Nevertheless, our recommendations remain in place,” he stressed.
The WHO calls on Europeans to continue to self-isolate if they have respiratory symptoms, to check that their vaccinations are up to date and to wear a mask in crowded places. “We must continue to track the virus because not doing so makes us increasingly blind to the modes of transmission and (its) evolution,” said the director of WHO Europe.