Omicron sub-variant discussed by infectious disease expert
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In his latest YouTube video, Professor Spector said: “Predicted cases on the rise again for the first time in weeks.” The professor, who heads up the ZOE Covid symptom app, was referring to the uptick of Covid cases reported across the UK. The ZOE Covid symptom app provides updates on Covid’s movements from millions of users to its app.
In addition to rising cases, the app hints at the prevalence of different symptoms among the general population.
“Runny nose is showing up in nearly 80 percent of all cases which is quite amazing really,” said Prof Spector.
According to the professor, it shows Omicron “really affects the nose”.
Runny nose (also known as rhinorrhoea), happens when excess fluid drains from the nose.
Other common symptoms include:
- Sore throat
- Persistent cough
- Hoarse voice
- Chills or shivers
- Unusual joint pains.
Why are cases on the rise in England?
A rise in Covid infections was to be “expected” following the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in England, the Health Secretary has said.
Sajid Javid said that the UK remains in a “very good position” but he urged adults eligible for a booster vaccine to come forward and get the jab.
The latest data from the Office for National Statistics COVID-19 Infections Survey showed an increase in cases across the whole of the UK.
Meanwhile, Mr Javid said that a “handful” of cases of the so-called Deltacron variant had been identified in the UK, but were “not of particular concern”.
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Some 99.9 percent of infections in Britain are of the Omicron variant, he added.
Mr Javid told Sky News: “We keep the situation very carefully under review.
“There’s no other variant of concern out there that is an issue at this point in time.
“We have seen some rises in infections over the last week but given the increase in social mixing this was to be expected.”
Asked about cases of Deltacron in the UK, Mr Javid told BBC Breakfast: “I think there’s only a handful of cases here in the UK, it’s not something that’s of particular concern to us at this point in time.
“We do keep the situation under review on a daily basis, but the dominant variant in the UK – 99.9% of infections are Omicron infections.
“And whilst the rate has gone up modestly in the last few days, that’s to be expected as we are now open as a country and there’s more social mixing, but there’s nothing in the data at this point in time that gives us any cause for concern.”
The Deltacron variant appears to contain genetic material from both the Delta and Omicron variants.
UK health officials have identified a small number of cases in the UK but have said that the variant is “not exhibiting a growth rate that is unusual or alarming”.
There were 72,898 cases of COVID-19 reported in the UK on Friday.
On February 24, when most of the remaining COVID-19 restrictions in England came to an end, there were 38,933 cases reported.
According to the ONS survey, in the week ending March 5, one in every 25 people in England had Covid in the UK, the survey suggests.
One in every 13 people in Northern Ireland and one in every 18 people in Scotland were estimated to have COVID-19, as were one in every 30 people in Wales.
There are also almost 12,000 people in hospital with COVID-19.
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