Omikron in Saxony: suspicion of new corona variant confirmed – WELT

Germany pandemic

Suspicion of new Corona variant Omikron confirmed in Saxony

Corona incidence is falling slightly – is that the turning point?

The nationwide seven-day incidence of new corona infections has fallen slightly for the first time in weeks, and the hospitalization rate has also decreased. However, one must view this improvement with caution. WELT reporter Paul Sonntag explains more about this.

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He was not abroad and had no contact with someone who was: The new Coronavirus variant Omikron has been detected in a 39-year-old man in Saxony. New suspected cases have already arisen in Hesse and North Rhine-Westphalia.

Dhe new Coronavirus variant Omikron is in Saxony has been proven. A spokeswoman for the city announced on Tuesday that the case in Leipzig was confirmed by genome sequencing. It is a suspected case that the head of the health department, Regine Krause-Döring, had already reported the day before. A 39-year-old man is therefore affected who has neither been abroad nor had contact with a person who was abroad.

The man is being housed in a hospital. The city did not disclose any details about his health. The Leipzig health department is now trying to understand the man’s contacts, said the spokesman. However, given the abundance of new infections every day, the authority is already working to the limit. Nothing is known about other Omikron cases so far. “But we have to assume that there are other people walking around with the Omikron variant,” said the spokesman.

Saxony is considered to be nationwide corona hotspot – According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the seven-day incidence on Tuesday was 1268.9. In many places the hospitals and intensive care units are overloaded. For the first time, the Bundeswehr will also fly intensive care patients from Saxony to North Rhine-Westphalia for treatment on Wednesday. According to information from the German Press Agency, the Luftwaffe’s special aircraft will bring the seriously ill from Dresden to Cologne on Wednesday.

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New virus variant Omikron

In Hessen Meanwhile, two more suspected cases have arisen. As the Frankfurt Health Department announced, a total of six people are suspected on the basis of variant-specific PCR testing. Sequencing for confirmation has not yet taken place.

In three cases the people were in South Africa and in one case in Zimbabwe. Two suspected cases are secondary cases of two sick people. They would have been infected in Germany. According to the health department, all those affected are in isolation at home.

Another suspected Omikron case in North Rhine-Westphalia

Im District of Kleve Another suspected case of the coronavirus variant Omikron has been identified. As the district administration announced on Tuesday, the fully immunized, but still infected person from Rees flew from Cape Town in South Africa to Frankfurt am Main on November 23. The next day, symptoms of the disease appeared. Final studies on the Omikron variant are still pending. A person traveling with them is in quarantine, but has so far not had any symptoms. Six other contact persons were identified, two of which had a positive PCR test. Everyone should be in quarantine.

Cases of the variant have now appeared in a number of countries. In Israel two doctors near the metropolis of Tel Aviv were infected with the Omikron variant. One of the two cardiologists was in from a medical conference London returned and infected his colleague after his return, said a spokesman for the clinic. This means that four Omicron cases have been confirmed in Israel so far, and there are still several suspected cases.

The World Health Organization (WHO) classified the Corona variant, which was first discovered in southern Africa, on Friday as “worrying”.

Approval of new vaccines could take up to four months

Scientists believe that the Omicron variant is more contagious than the currently prevailing delta variant. In addition, the US corona vaccine manufacturer Moderna warned that the previous vaccinations are less effective against the newly discovered virus variant.

Of the European Medicines Agency EMA No information is yet available on whether new Covid-19 vaccines against the Omikron variant are needed. The EMA is preparing for it, says the head of the authority, Emer Cooke, in the European Parliament. Laboratory tests should provide more clarity in around two weeks. Even if the new omicron variant continues to spread, the existing vaccines will continue to offer protection, says Cooke.

Should adjustments to the vaccine become necessary, these could be approved within three to four months.

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Omikron in Saxony: suspicion of new corona variant confirmed – WELT