Published On: Fri, Dec 31st, 2021

Omicron wave may have peaked, says South Africa

Johannesburg/New Delhi: In some comforting news amid Omicron spread globally, South Africa may have passed the peak of Covid-19 infections and the country has lifted overnight curfew rules, the media reported on Friday.

There had been a marginal increase in the number of deaths

The Omicron variant, while highly transmissible, had seen lower hospitalisation rates than previous waves in South Africa, the BBC said, quoting from a statement by the government.

“There had been a marginal increase in the number of deaths”, the statement said.

“For the week ending 25 December 2021, the number of confirmed infections stood at 89,781 — down from 127,753 the week before,” according to the report.

The country still has “spare capacity for admission of patients even for routine health services” despite the Omicron wave.

South Africa has recorded almost 3.5 million Covid-19 cases and more than 90,000 deaths during the pandemic.

The fast-spreading Omicron variant is likely to soon replace the Delta strain globally, experts in Singapore have warned, as countries after countries have reported a record surge in the Covid cases.

Meanwhile, the Omicron infection tally climbed to 1,270 in India and of the total patients, 374 have been discharged from hospitals. So far, a total of 23 states have reported the new variant.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has cautioned that the more transmissible Omicron together with the currently circulating Delta variants might lead to “a tsunami of cases,” putting immense pressure on national health systems.

Recapping WHO’s response since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a press briefing that he’s “highly concerned that Omicron being more transmissible, circulating at the same time as Delta — is leading to a tsunami of cases.”

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