By Bibiana Piene
– It is very likely that we will have to adapt measures continuously, assistant health director Espen Rostrup Nakstad told NTB.
– This is a development in the next few days with an omicron variant which will determine which action is required. But we have to be prepared for far more omicron infections, he said.
The latest figures from FHI show that omicron infections more than doubled from week 48 to 49. Last week, 660 cases of omicron were registered, compared with 293 cases in the previous week. A total of 958 cases have been registered.
It is up to the politicians to decide which course of action to take, and at least when. So, it’s very uncertain how Christmas will be this year.
– We still believe that the Christmas holidays are a period with less risk of infection than everyday life, because schools are closed and people have time off at Christmas, says Nakstad, indicating that it’s the number of close contacts you have during the week determine the risk of infection. .
– The Christmas holidays probably meant less close contact for most people, he said.
At the same time, large numbers of people will congregate in thousands of homes, often with many relatives and family, which can increase the risk of infection. And for a while the baby gets older, he will cope with this.
– We encourage everyone to ensure that they are healthy, said Nakstad.
Three doses is not enough
When it comes to omicron, even a third dose isn’t enough to control the spread of infection, according to FHI’s director of infection control Geir Bukholm. In Denmark, one in ten people infected with micronutrients have received three doses of the vaccine.
– We don’t expect that a third dose alone is enough to control the spread of infection, he said.
– It’s not surprising. We know that this vaccine does not protect 100 percent, and even a booster dose will cause a person to become infected, Bukholm told NRK.
In the next few weeks, we may have a high spread of omicron infections, Nakstad stressed.
– What worries us most about the new variant is that the number of registered cases seems to be doubling every second or third today in the UK and Denmark. The most important thing now is to follow the spread of omicron across different age groups, Nakstad said.
– There is not much appeal from vaccines in preventing the spread of infection. Therefore, other contact reduction measures are still required. But we hope that vaccines protect against serious diseases, he said.
The case continues during the video
The recent high infection rate has led to more hospitalizations. In the past 24 hours, 3,622 new infections were registered, and as of Sunday, 331 coronavirus patients were hospitalized, the highest number ever.
But at the same time, the proportion of people infected with Delta requiring hospitalization is now lower than last year because of the vaccine, according to Nakstad.
– We don’t know how it works with omicron, except that it doesn’t look like it causes more serious disease among those vaccinated than delta. But we only have information among younger adults about this. We don’t know how it behaves in the older age group. The symptom picture actually looks very similar to the delta variant, he said.
Only 7 percent of all people over the age of 45 in the country are not vaccinated. But this group makes up more than 40 percent of coronavirus patients in Norwegian hospitals, according to figures from FHI.
Keep yourself updated. Receive daily newsletter from Dagsavisen