BERLIN- Senior German virologist Christian Drosten warned on Friday there are far too many cases of the Omicron coronavirus variant, which zeroes out any wins that may have come from it having a milder course of disease.
He added it is still crucial to receive a COVID-19 jab as vaccinations slow down the coronavirus' spread even if relatively high numbers of vaccinated people become infected.
"The gap in vaccinations is our greatest obstacle," he said.
The highly contagious variant is set to overtake the Delta variant in coming days, said Lothar Wieler, the head of Germany's Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases.
German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach shut out the possibility of easing current coronavirus measures, adding even more restrictions might become necessary if numbers rose dramatically or hospitals were overwhelmed.
(Reporting by Miranda Murray and Kirsti Knolle; Editing by Zuzanna Szymanska) ((Miranda.Murray@thomsonreuters.com;))