Since the day before Christmas Eve, more than 50 percent of corona infections are suspected cases of omicron, as the head of the state registration office, Helmut Fickenscher, NDR Schleswig-Holstein says. The data from the health authorities in the country come together in the state registration office. “That means that Omikron is really there,” explains Fickenscher. This is no longer a special case of tourists arriving from South Africa. “The variant is on the way in the Schleswig-Holstein population.” According to the virologist, the frequency of omicron cases now fluctuates between 50 and 60 percent from day to day.
Mostly 20 to 30 year olds affected
And, according to Fickenscher, this currently affects one age group in particular in Schleswig-Holstein: the 20 to 30 year olds. “That may have something to do with the fact that it has already been demonstrated in Hamburg, especially in the area of the party scene,” says Fickenscher. In this environment, of course, it can easily spread – even to the surrounding area. Fickenscher expects the virus to spread further from this age group. “That depends on the close contacts, and it is to be expected that it will continue to affect the other age groups”.
The suspicion of omicrons is established during the analysis of the PCR tests in laboratories – and, according to Fickenscher, is usually correct: “With very, very few exceptions, this suspicion is also confirmed when the entire virus genome is sequenced”. Politicians and scientists are particularly concerned about the very rapid spread of the omicron variant. The federal government’s new Corona Expert Council warned of an “explosive spread” that would also affect those who have recovered and those who have been vaccinated more.
Fickenscher: 800 omicron cases in SH
The number of cases will now continue to increase every day, says Fickenscher. He expects the Omikron variant to completely replace the previously prevalent Delta variant – in one to two weeks. On Tuesday the RKI reported in his daily overview of the Omikron cases 626 known Omikron cases from Schleswig-Holstein, 301 more than on Monday. The cases include the Omicron cases definitely detected by sequencing (42) and the suspected cases that are suspicious in the PCR test (584). According to Fickenscher, the total number of Omikron cases was already 800 by late Tuesday afternoon.
The first evidence of an Omikron case was in Schleswig-Holstein on December 3rd. South African scientists first warned against the rapid spread of this variant at the end of November. In Schleswig-Holstein, Omikron managed to become dominant in less than three weeks.