Dec 07, 2021
By Jane Brown
While we wait to see if the current COVID-19 vaccines are effective against the new Omicron variant, a new poll suggests Canadians are ready to brace for the worst.
“Since Omicron has been announced or foreseen, then we’ve really seen a dip in Canadians feeling optimistic about where we’re at in the pandemic,” said Leger Executive Vice-President Christian Bourque, who says more than 80 percent of respondents to an online survey say they support closing the Canadian border to travellers coming from countries where the Omicron variant is present.
And close to 70 percent of respondents say they would approve of reintroducing restrictions in Canada, such as social distancing and temporary lockdowns for certain places and activities.
In response to the detection of Omicron, the governing Liberals in Ottawa quickly put in place travel measures, including banning visitors who have recently travelled through 10 African countries, to curb the spread.
But Epidemiologist Dr. Tim Sly in the School of Public Health at Ryerson University, says Omicron does not appear to be as severe as the Delta variant.
“So far, from a simply field observation, the people who are showing up with this appear to have a rather overwhelming fatigue and a fairly mild set of symptoms, not the serious stuff that we’ve been dreading,” explained Dr. Sly.
Listen to the full conversation with Dr. Sly by clicking here.
In Ontario, there are 13 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant with a potential cluster of 30 additional cases being investigated in London, Ontario.