The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is likely to expand internationally and poses a “very high” global risk, and higher growth in the number of infected could have “severe consequences” in some areas, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday.
The WHO has classified this variant B.1.1.529 as a variant of concern. They stated that there are a large number of mutations, some of which are worrying.
Can home tests detect this Omicron variant?
Professor Linda Bould of the University of Edinburgh explained that rapid home tests pick up a protein from the virus to detect its presence, not its genetic composition, and therefore cannot identify a particular variant.
Bould points out that early signs show that rapid tests give positive results for people infected with the Omicron variant as well as for other strains of Covid-19, writes the BBC. She emphasizes that the delta variant is still the most dominant in the UK and that this variant of the virus is well detected by home tests. This shows that quick home tests are extremely helpful.