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Asia braces for Omicron’s full arrival

SEOUL – As the ultra-transmissible Omicron strain of Covid-19 quickly spreads in the West, Asia is bracing for the worst – just as the first wave of studies indicate the variant has milder symptoms than its predecessor strains.

While the scientific and media communities have focused sharply on Omicron’s transmissibility, the nascent research shows what had been suspected since its identification: That the mutati0n is considerably – perhaps very considerably – less dangerous than prior variants.

Still, Omicron’s surge is putting immense strain on policymakers as they seek to balance the personal and economic freedoms of Covid-weary publics with prudent risk assessment and pandemic containment.



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