Simulation researcher Nicholas Popper, also a member of the state crisis coordination Gekko, gave a mixed view of the upcoming epidemic in Austria in a ZIB 2 interview Tuesday evening: “At the end of the week we will definitely arrive and then there’s the number of unreported cases.
Moderator Armin Wolf wanted to know if he also saw numbers coming our way due to the high risk of the Omicron mutation, as in Israel, where 40,000-50,000 new infections are currently recorded daily. “It depends on the testing strategy,” Popper stated simply. In any case, gecko counseling is all about responding in time if it turns out that the number of infections clearly exceeds the calculated models. Popper: “The main thing now is to protect critical infrastructure.”
What does it say about the many reports of people who have been vaccinated three times and still have Omicron? “The triple vaccination is still not 100 percent protective,” Popper said. “It protects against infection – even if not as strong as we would like – but above all, the third vaccination clearly protects against serious diseases.”
Do lighter color gradients with Omikron allow for higher numbers?
These difficult gradients are generally less common with the Omikron than, for example, with the deltas of its predecessor. “This also means that much fewer intensive care beds are needed if the number of infections remains the same, because ventilators are less important for Omikron infection,” the simulated researcher explained.
“Does this mean that even very, very high numbers of casualties don’t burden hospitals as badly as in Delta?” asked Wolf. Popper: “The evidence is not yet certain for us here.” That’s why Gecko is also carefully looking at what the situation in intensive care units will look like even as Omicron infection rates rise, according to the expert. “We really drive here.”
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