He added, “We call on all countries to increase the means of monitoring and examinations, and to place genetic sequence. Any indulgence now would cost lives.”
The World Health Organization pointed to early evidence of Biontech and Pfizer on the efficacy of their vaccine against Omicron.
The two companies said, on Wednesday, that a group consisting of 3 doses of their vaccine was able, in the laboratory, to neutralize mutant omicron, while two doses produced fewer antibodies by a factor of 25.
The chief scientist at the World Health Organization said it was too early to confirm whether the lack of antibodies meant that the vaccination was less effective, warning against jumping to conclusions about the test.
“We don’t know that,” Soumya Swaminathan said at the press conference, adding that there was a need for a coordinated global research effort.
The World Health Organization also indicated that it will publish within days a review of its position on booster doses, but giving the first doses remains a priority, with alarmingly low vaccination rates in many developing countries.
“High dose booster doses are not the answer,” Swaminathan said.