The US authorities fear that the spread of the epidemic will get a new boost from the new virus variant. The first infection with the new variant discovered in California was announced Wednesday night (CET) – a person who returned from South Africa on November 22 was affected, the CDC said Wednesday.
India reported its first two cases of Omicron on Thursday. A representative from the health ministry in the southern state of Karnataka said that two men, aged between 46 and 66, had tested positive for coronavirus. Now all first and second degree contacts will also be tested.
In Europe, the first Omicron infection was detected in France itself – that is, outside its overseas territories – on Thursday. The regional health authority said genetic sequencing of the sample from a man from the Ile-de-France region showed he had the new variant. France had already reported its first case of Omicron in the overseas territory of La Reunion on Tuesday.
In France, there are now fears that Omikron will dominate the epidemic at the start of the new year. “We will likely see an increased increase in the Omikron variant, which will likely outperform the Delta version at the end of January,” government adviser Jean-Francois Delfraissy told BFM TV on Thursday.
The first case of the new virus variant was also detected on the holiday island of Mallorca, which is popular with Austrians and Germans. The coronavirus mutation was found in a 20-year-old Swiss woman who traveled from South Africa to the island via Frankfurt, the Mallorca-Zeitung newspaper reported on Thursday. In Germany, the coronavirus test for fully vaccinated travelers was still negative, but the additional test in Mallorca was positive. With her companion who tested negative, the woman now has to be in quarantine for two weeks. Several cases of Omikron have already been recorded on the Spanish mainland in the past few days.
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