However, the entity asked vaccine manufacturers to begin adjusting existing drugs and “not wait until the final alarm bell rings.”

So far there have been no deaths caused by the omicron strain of the coronavirus, said Christian Lindmeier, spokesman for the World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday during a UN briefing in Geneva, Switzerland.

“I have not yet seen reports of deaths related to the omicron variant,” the official said. However, in his view “it is highly recommended that vaccine manufacturers already begin to plan in advance […] the probability of having to adjust the existing vaccine,” he said. “It is best not to wait until the final alarm bell rings,” Lindmeier stressed.