Omicron sub-variant BA.2 accounts for half of all Danish infections

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Rajeev Choudhury

BA.2 subvariant of the Omicron variant of COVID19 virus is accounting for almost half the all Omicron cases in Denmark, data released by the Statens Serum Institute (SII), responsible for outbreak preparedness in Denmark show.

The sub-variant BA.2, which accounted for just 20% of all Onicron cases in the country during the last week of December, accounted for 45% of all new cases in the country, the institute said in an official statement released on January 19, 2022.

There is also an increase in BA.2 cases in other countries, like Great Britain, Norway and Sweden, but apparently not quite at the same level as in Denmark, the statement added.

Stating that the differences in the mutation between the sub-variants are quite substantial, SII said that the difference in mutations between BA.1 and BA.2 is greater than the difference between the original variant and the alpha variant.

Quoting from the data from hospitalised COVID19 patients, SII said that approximately  86% of all new hospital admissions and 46% of ICU patients were infected with the Omicron during the first week of January 2022.

However, the proportion of new admissions to intensive care has decreased from week last half of December 2021 to the second week of January 2022, SII said.

Records show that the current COVID19 related admissions appear to be driven by the Omicron variant and at the same time, data show that the number of new intensive care units has decreased, as Omikron has become dominant among the hospitalised patients SII added.

“It is reassuring to see that the number of intensive new inpatients is decreasing as Omicron has become dominant among all inpatients. This supports that the risk of hospitalisation is lower for Omicron than for Delta, as several foreign studies and Danish data now also suggest. ” Dr Tyra Grove Krause, Head of Department, Public Health Medicine, said.

So far three sub-variants of the Omicron variant has been identified across the world, since it was labelled as a Variant of Concern by the World Health Organisation on November 26, 2021.


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