OMICRON is at least 2.4 times more likely to reinfect people who've already had Covid, scientists have revealed.
The variant has a "substantial" ability to swerve immunity in people previously infected with the virus, the first real-world study of the new variant found.
South Africa's National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) warned its report has "important implications for public health globally" as Omicron drives a huge spike in cases.
NICD data yesterday showed 11,535 new Covid cases recorded in the last 24 hours, a surge of 368 percent from last Thursday's figure of 2,465.
Of the 51,402 people who took a test a whopping 22.4 percent tested positive - up from 3.6 percent last Wednesday.
Only a quarter of people in South Africa are fully vaccinated, but previous waves of infection from other Covid strains had built up natural immunity.
Prior infection was previously found to to slash the risk of catching Covid, but Gauteng province - where 80 per cent of people have tested positive previously - remains the epicentre of South Africa's current explosion in cases.
Omicron variant at least 2.4x more likely to re-infect people who have already HAD Covid, scientists reveal
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