The Omicron coronavirus variant is "not a disaster" and some people may be "hugely overstating the situation", a scientist advising the government says.
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Omicron has been labelled "of concern" by the World Health Organization, and is causing alarm among some scientists.
But microbiologist Prof Calum Semple says vaccines are "still likely to protect you from severe disease".
Prof Semple does, however, support the new UK travel restrictions, saying they will allow more people to get jabbed.
Asked whether people should be fearful of the new variant, Prof Semple - who sits on the UK government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies - told BBC Breakfast: "This is not a disaster, and the headlines from some of my colleagues saying 'this is horrendous' I think are hugely overstating the situation.
"Immunity from the vaccination is still likely to protect you from severe disease. You might get a snuffle or a headache or a filthy cold but your chance of coming into hospital or intensive care or sadly dying are greatly diminished by the vaccine and still will be going into the future."
So far, more than 50 million people in the UK have had at least one dose of a Covid vaccine. More than 42 million have had two doses while almost 17 million have had a third or booster jab.