Especially vulnerable groups should be protected, says virologist von Laer.
Preliminary study data suggest that the omicron variant BA.2 could be more infectious and dangerous than the previously dominant BA.1 variant. Nor does surviving infection protect against further BA.2 infection. However, it remains unclear whether the new variant is more pathogenic, that is, makes you sicker, explains virologist Dorothy von Laer of the University of Medicine in Innsbruck Monday evening in Vorarlberg Live. “This week we will probably already have more than 50 per cent of infections in Austria of type BA.2.”
With a moderate omicron cycle, the chances of forming antibodies against the delta variant also decrease.
It is currently unclear what the long-term consequences of oomicron infection will look like. “The first indications of a prolonged Covid in Omicron are there. However, the deciding factor is that light courses can lead to just as long Covid courses as intense courses,” explains the virologist.
Dorothy von Laer has mixed feelings about the upcoming fall. In any case, it is important to close the vaccination gap in vulnerable groups by the fall: “Otherwise, if there is a new variant, perhaps not harmful, we will have problems in hospitals again in the fall. We have to get over 90 percent there.” The question remains open as to whether the entire population should be vaccinated.