We entered the year 2021 with a lot of optimism hoping to see the end of COVID-19 pandemic, resumption of face to face interaction, education, socialisation, weddings and with holiday plans.

Here we are entering the year 2022 in a much worse condition than a year ago. Much of the world including Australia is struggling with multiple variants of Covid-19 inspite of widespread rollout of vaccines and testing for infections.

Sydney had one of the longest and strictest lockdowns in an attempt to bring the infection rate to zero, a strategy that had to be finally abandoned due to public pressure and political fatigue.

With the daily infection rate in Australia overblowing to 50,000 and more where NSW has reached a record number of 35,000 infections overnight, the new strategy is to live with the virus and manage the disease it causes, as best as possible.

The latest data shows the new variant Omicron to be highly contagious but it apparently attacks only nose and throat with limited adverse affect on the lungs, hence less symptomatic.

Thankfully, although the infection rate has gone sky-high, hospitalisations of infected patients has not been matched and so far has been manageable.

Now we enter the year 2022 with many uncertainties as to which variant of the COVID-19 will emerge next, how contagious it will be and how severe disease it will cause.

The holiday plans this summer had to be abandoned so were major celebrations, conferences, sports and even weddings. It has become very risky under the circumstances to plan for major communal events in the new year.

On the positive side, we have now learnt to live, work and play with the virus. Virtual communication skills have been developed and both employees and employers are satisfied with the mutual arrangements of working from home.

With skyrocketing infection rate globally as well as in Australia, albeit from the Omicron variant, there is still no light at the end of the tunnel and we can only hope and pray that this year 2022 will somehow will be the year where we will able to manage this disease if not eradicate it completely Inshallah.