WDH / Covid in South Africa: Study shows mild disease courses

Wednesday, 12/22/2021 1:27 PM from


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View of Cape Town in South Africa from above. ©

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JOHANNESBURG (dpa-AFX) – In South Africa, a new study confirms the rather mild course of the disease of the coronavirus variant Omikron. According to the authors, after evaluating the data available up to the end of November, there is an up to 80 percent lower chance of having to go to hospital for treatment. “The very encouraging data strongly suggest a lesser severity of the omicron wave of infection,” said Cheryl Cohen of South Africa’s National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) on Wednesday. However, she warned that the data are still early and that more studies are needed. The vaccinated Omikron patients would also have a 70 percent chance of avoiding treatment in the intensive care unit.

With the onset of the summer holidays in South Africa, the new Coronavirus variant Omikron is now spreading nationwide – but seems to be losing momentum in the previous epicenter around the cities of Johannesburg and Pretoria (Gauteng Province). “Yes, the number of cases in Gauteng Province has been falling for over a week – so I think we have reached the peak of the fourth wave there,” said Cohen. But it is still too early to speak of reaching the peak of the fourth wave of infections nationwide.

In South Africa, the omicron variant dominates the infection process. The greater area around the metropolis of Johannesburg and the capital Pretoria had at times had a share of up to 80 percent of the daily new infections nationwide. However, the number of hospital admissions is well below that of previous waves of infection. The number of stays in the hospital also fell significantly to an average of three to four days, according to the study./rek/DP/nas


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