Omicron hospitalisation rate up to 70pc lower, says UK govt agency

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A test sample tube labeled 'Covid-19 Omicron variant' is pictured in this illustration photo of a new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.529, taken in Kyiv 2 December, 2021. — Reuters pic
Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - A test sample tube labeled 'Covid-19 Omicron variant' is pictured in this illustration photo of a new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.529, taken in Kyiv 2 December, 2021. — Reuters pic

LONDON, Dec 24 — The risk of hospitalisation is up to 70 per cent lower among people infected with the Omicron variant compared with previously dominant Delta, a UK government agency said Thursday.

The UK’s Health Security Agency (UKHSA)said in a briefing its latest research into Omicron cases in the country had found that “an individual with Omicron is estimated to be between 31 and 45 per cent less likely to attend A&E (hospital emergency departments) compared to Delta, and 50 to 70 per cent less likely to be admitted to hospital”.

It cautioned that the results were “preliminary and highly uncertain” since they are based on a small sample of cases of hospitalisations so far where Omicron has been confirmed.

There have been 132 such hospitalisations, more than 40 per cent of them in London, it said.

Of those requiring hospitalisation, 17 had received a booster vaccine, while 74 people had received two doses and 27 people were not vaccinated.

Two studies from Britain previously showed Covid infections with Omicron are less likely to result in hospitalisation compared to the Delta variant. — AFP

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