Georgia is expecting to receive special PCR tests from international partners to diagnose the new Omicron variant of coronavirus which was detected in South Africa last month and was classified as a ‘variant of concern’ by the World Health Organization (WHO), Head of Georgia’s National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Amiran Gamkrelidze stated earlier today, Trend reports citing Agenda.ge.
The WHO says that Omicron has an ‘unprecedented number of spike mutations’, which is concerning due to the potential impact on the trajectory of the pandemic.
Gamkrelidze says that the special PCR tests detect the new variant. However, Omicron is fully identified by an expensive method of sequencing the organism’s genetic material ‘which Georgia is able to do at Lugar Lab in Tbilisi.’
He said that NCDC has already drafted a guideline for labs, where people are tested for coronavirus, on how to detect the new variant.
Gamkrelidze also said that Georgian citizens may be allowed to get a booster shot of coronavirus after three months from the second shot of any vaccine available in Georgia instead of six months.