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August 20, 2022



Community spread of Omicron reported from socially excluded locality in the Czech Republic

4.1.2022 11:27
The mobile vaccination team at the Mojžíř housing estate in Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic (2021). (PHOTO: Konexe)
The mobile vaccination team at the Mojžíř housing estate in Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic (2021). (PHOTO: Konexe)

The regional Ústecký deník newspaper reports that community spread of the new COVID-19 mutation called Omicron is happening at the Mojžíř housing estate, a socially excluded locality in Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic. According to public health officials, Omicron arrived in the Ústecký Region during the holidays and is spreading very quickly.

Overall, the COVID-19 epidemic in the Czech Republic is gaining momentum again. There were 9 333 confirmed cases of the disease yesterday, the most since Tuesday, 21 December.

Compared to the previous Monday, this is an increase of about 2 500 cases. Thus, the predictions of experts who stated that the number of infected people will increase in the new year are beginning to come true.
The reason is exactly this more contagious variant of COVID-19, Omicron. According to the State Institute of Public Health (SZÚ), it will probably become the dominant variant in the Czech Republic in 10 to 14 days.

The community spread of Omicron has already begun throughout the Ústecký Region. "We have the most people infected with this variant so far in the Litoměřice, Děčín, Louny and Ústí areas, where community spread of the new mutation has already started in one of the excluded localities," Regional Hygienist Lenka Šimůnková told the Dení news server.   

According to Deník, community spread of the virus is underway at the Mojžíř housing estate in Ústí nad Labem. This has also been confirmed to the server by Miroslav Brož of the Konexe organization, which operates in the Ústecký Region.

Evolutionary biologist Jaroslav Flegr also warned about this COVID-19 variant in an interview with ROMEA TV. According to him, the immunity that one could have gained from catching a previous mutation of the disease is not effective against Omicron.

According to Flegr, the only way to handle the next COVID-19 variants is to be fully vaccinated. That means receiving the first two basic doses and a third booster shot.

Brož is also appealing for vaccinations, calling on all those who have not yet done so to get vaccinated or boosted. "The COVID-19 vaccine does not provide 100% protection against the disease, just as no vaccine in history ever has. However, vaccination reduces the chance that a person will become infected, and if a vaccinee becomes infected, he or she has a much, much lower chance of experiencing a difficult course of the disease and ending up in a hospital or morgue," he said.

"The vaccines are safe, side effects from them are quite rare. The chances of having serious side effects after the vaccine are about as high or lower than the chances of side effects from taking ibuprofen," Broz added.

Since the pandemic began in March 2020, the Czech Republic's laboratories have detected a total of 2 493 145 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Most people have recovered from the infection.

On the other hand, 36 326 people have died of COVID-19 in the Czech Republic so far. In the first half of December, there were more than 100 such victims in the Czech Republic per day, but their numbers have recently declined.

Healthcare professionals in the Czech Republic have administered more than 15.5 million doses of the vaccine in about a year, and 6.7 million people are fully vaccinated. Yesterday 69 000 people underwent vaccination in the country, more than 57 000 of whom received a booster shot.

ryz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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