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Figures show that the rise in Omicron cases is not matched by hospitalization


A new analysis today suggested that the NHS may not be overwhelmed by the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus.

Data collected in one of the first regions to experience a cluster of Omicron variant cases showed that hospitalizations were not in line with prevalence.

The figures, compiled by the Wellcome Sanger Institute, showed that Brackley in Northamptonshire had seen 926 omicron cases per 100,000 people – the highest in the country.

However, according to The Telegraph, the rate of hospitalizations at NHS Northampton General Hospital is not seeing a similar boom.

The rate of renewed admissions on December 12 was about 11 percent of the peak seen in January – consistent with the trend of high cases but low admissions seen in South Africa.

The data comes amid fears Britain will slip into stricter restrictions ahead of Christmas Day, with Health Minister Sajid Javid today hinting that such a move could be on the table.

A new analysis today suggested that the NHS may not be overwhelmed by the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus. Data collected in Brackley, Northamptonshire, one of the first areas to experience a cluster of Omicron variant cases, showed that hospitalizations did not keep pace with prevalence.

Brackley in Northamptonshire has seen 926 cases per 100,000 people - the highest in the country.  However, the rate of hospital admissions at Northampton General Hospital (pictured) is not seeing a similar increase in NHS confidence

Brackley in Northamptonshire has seen 926 cases per 100,000 people – the highest in the country. However, the rate of hospital admissions at Northampton General Hospital (pictured) is not seeing a similar increase in NHS confidence

The region’s high vaccination rates have also helped, with 83 percent of people getting a second injection and 50 percent receiving a booster dose. The national average for a third dose is 40 percent.

And vaccination rates in southern Northamptonshire are also reported to be over 90 per cent for those over their 60s – the group most at risk of serious disease.

South Northamptonshire has also seen a decline in infection rates among people over the age of 60, while infections among younger adults have reached record levels.

The optimistic picture chimes with the data seen in South Africa.

The mortality rate for people in Pretoria who were hospitalized with Omicron was less than half that of those in the previous delta wave.

Medical leaders in South Africa have also said that Omicron causes mild illness.

However, this may be in part because most young people in the country have either been vaccinated or infected with Covid in the past.

Yesterday, the number of people in hospitals nationwide using the Omicron variant rose by 20 to 85, and cases increased by 69 percent in one day with 10,059 more infections recorded.

Overall, Britain has registered another 90,418 Covid cases – 67 per cent more than the figure seven days ago.

And deaths from Covid-19 fell by five per cent in the past week, to 125 from 132 last Saturday, although it was up by 21 compared to Friday’s figure.

Another 900 people have been hospitalized with Covid, not much higher than the daily average of 865 in the past seven days.

There have also been 125 deaths linked to Covid, just above the daily average of 112 in the past week. In all, there were seven deaths associated with Omicron.

In the first wave of Covid in the spring of 2020, along with last winter, there was a significant peak of ‘excess death’ but this has not been the case so far this year.

Figures show that the rise in Omicron cases is not matched by hospitalization

The number of confirmed cases for Omicron in England is up 69 per cent from the previous day's total - an increase of 9,427 to 23,168, figures from UKHSA show today.

The number of confirmed cases for Omicron in England is up 69 per cent from the previous day’s total – an increase of 9,427 to 23,168, figures from UKHSA show today.

Official data showed that hospital admissions due to the Covid virus rose by more than a third in a week in the British hotspot Omicron in London.  About 199 infected patients were admitted to wards in London on Tuesday, the latest UKHSA numbers available.

Official data showed that hospital admissions due to the Covid virus rose by more than a third in a week in the British hotspot Omicron in London.

The data comes amid fears that a normal Christmas Day could be under threat after Health Minister Sajid Javid warned the government must take action on Omicron before it is “too late”.

SAGE experts have raised the alarm that the number of infections could soon reach two million by the end of the month unless stricter restrictions are imposed.

Medical and science chiefs Chris Whitty and Patrick Vallance are believed to have briefed Cabinet yesterday on the need for further action to stop hospital admissions rising to more than 3,000 people a day in England.

However, there is deep resistance among ministers over bringing millions of people back into lockdown as Christmas approaches.

There are also concerns that Boris Johnson may not have the political capital to push new restrictions after the massive rebellion against Plan B last week and the sudden resignation of Brexit Secretary Lord Frost last night.

However, this morning Mr. Javid hinted at possible new restrictions.

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, he said that in his previous career as a trader, “the most important decisions” were made when the data was “too early and incomplete, but a trend is emerging”.

“Once this trend leads to a clear result, it may be too late to respond,” he wrote.

In interviews this morning, Mr. Javid said the government was watching the evidence closely and ready to “do what is necessary” – but insisted that calls from SAGE would be “challenged”.

He also made a firm commitment that Parliament would be summoned if any action was taken.

Pushed on whether the circuit breaker can be ruled out before Christmas, Javid told the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme: “There are no guarantees”.

SAGE papers from Thursday’s meeting showed how advisers warned that delaying new restrictions until 2022 could “dramatically reduce the effectiveness of such interventions and reduce the likelihood that they will prevent significant strains on health and care settings”.

Figures show that the rise in Omicron cases is not matched by hospitalization

Figures show that the rise in Omicron cases is not matched by hospitalization

Figures show that the rise in Omicron cases is not matched by hospitalization

Chancellors want to reintroduce measures “equivalent to those after Step 2 or Step 1 of the Road Map in England”.

In the first phase of the roadmap in March of this year, only singles mixing outside homes was allowed, and non-essential retail remains closed.

In the second phase, bars and restaurants for the following month could serve customers outdoors, and families were not allowed to mingle indoors.

Cabinet Office Minister Steve Barclay will chair a Cobra meeting at a later date which is expected to consider the option of closing the “circuit breaker”.

But Johnson is believed to be skeptical of an immediate response and there would be significant opposition within his government.

One minister told the Sunday Times: “We can’t have a situation where we shut down every winter and wipe out the economy. We need to stop reading what’s happening in South Africa in terms of what’s happening here. It’s like comparing apples to pears.”

There is speculation that instead “handbrake will be withdrawn” after December 25, with claims an announcement was made on Boxing Day.



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