COVID-19: New wave of Omicron mutations spreading across Europe

Source: news.sky.com : 2022-07-07 15:10:00 :

A new wave of Covid-19 is sweeping across Europe driven by Omicron mutations, an EU Medicines Agency official has warned.

Head of vaccines at the agency, Marco Cavaleri, has said “the increase in transmission among older age groups is starting to translate into severe disease”.

The increase in the number of people testing positive is being driven by the BA.4 and BA.5 mutations of the Omicron variant.

In April, the EMA advised people aged over 80 to get a second vaccine booster. Now, they recommend people aged between 60-79 and medically vulnerable of any age to get the booster.

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Sky’s Kay Burley asks the WHO’s Dr David Nabarro about rising COVID cases in the UK – how worried should we be?

Mr Cavaleri said: “As this new wave is unfolding over the EU, it is essential to maintain protection of vulnerable groups and avoid any postponement of vaccination.”

Most coronavirus restrictions have been dropped across Europe and many people are using the summer to take a holiday for the first time since the pandemic began.

On June 30, the World Health Organisation said the number of new cases globally had risen 18% in the previous week, with more than 4.1 million cases reported.

Latest statistics from the ONS show that one in 30 people in the UK had the virus in the week to 24 June, which is an increase of 32% on the week before.

The UN health agency said in its latest weekly report on the pandemic that the worldwide number of deaths remained relatively similar to the week before, at about 8,500. 

COVID related deaths increased in three regions: the Middle East, Southeast Asia and the Americas.

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