The University of Warwick’s Dr Mike Tildesley has said that Covid could become ‘similar’ to the common cold.
Dr Tildesley, a member of the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Modelling group which feeds into SAGE, has offered some encouraging thoughts during an interview with Times Radio.
The thing that might happen in the future is you may see the emergence of a new variant that is less severe, and ultimately, in the long term, what happens is Covid becomes endemic and you have a less severe version. It’s very similar to the common cold that we’ve lived with for many years.
While this all sounds like good news, Dr Tildesley was quick to say that ‘we’re not quite there yet’, adding there were still ‘concerning’ rates of Omicron in the North East and North West of England.
We’re not quite there yet but possibly Omicron is the first ray of light there that suggests that may happen in the longer term – it is, of course, much more transmissible than Delta was, which is concerning, but much less severe.
Hopefully, as we move more towards the spring and we see the back of Omicron, we can get more inter-relationship of living with Covid as an endemic disease and protecting the vulnerable.
The expert went on to say ‘it doesn’t sound all doom and gloom’ and it was ‘good news’ that the hospital stays of those with Omicron seem to be ‘on average shorter’ than those previously.