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Will 2022 be when Covid becomes endemic?

Ideas

Will 2022 be when Covid becomes endemic?

Some nations think so, but experts say we must still be vigilant and there’s ‘no reason to sound the all-clear’

Naomi Kresge and Tim Loh

After two years of contagion and death, Covid-19 is shifting again. Omicron is spreading faster than any previous variant, but it’s also proving less malevolent. There’s growing talk that the worst pandemic of the past century may soon be known in another way — as endemic.

Spain threw out the idea last week when Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said it’s time to think about new ways of living with Covid-19 long term, such as the world does with flu. Other countries jumped in, saying they may be moving towards a new chapter of the disease.

Health experts, however, are preaching caution, saying there’s too much uncertainty about how the virus will evolve, how much immunity society has built up and potential damage if people stop being careful...

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