No point in counting Covid-19 cases anymore as virus is here to stay, says top Thai virologist

Image from The Nation Thailand/ANN

BANGKOK, Feb 6 (The Nation Thailand/ANN): Covid-19 is not going anywhere and will soon become another seasonal disease like influenza, Chulalongkorn University’s top virologist said on Monday.

Dr Yong Poovorawan said there is no point in counting Covid-19 cases now as the figure only represents a fraction of the true number of infections.

Over 70% of people globally, or around 5 billion, may have been infected with Covid-19 while the recorded figure is only 700 million Covid-19 cases, he said.

He added that almost 80% of Thailand's population may have been infected with Covid-19, resulting in a high level of hybrid immunity from infection and vaccination.

"Thailand is currently reporting only the number of hospitalised patients and deaths," he said.

He also expects the World Health Organisation to stop counting Covid cases soon, as the situation in China has improved and the severity of the disease is declining over time.

"More than 80% of Covid-19 deaths are among the elderly and those with underlying diseases."

Yong also said it was no longer necessary for people to be vaccinated every 4-6 months as Covid-19 is now becoming a seasonal disease. Instead, he advised annual vaccination focused on the vulnerable group.

For Thailand, vaccination should be conducted in April and May to contain the spread of Covid-19 in the rainy season, he said. - The Nation Thailand/ANN

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