FHI: The spread of coronavirus continues to increase in most parts of Norway

FHIPhoto: Fredrik Hagen / NTB

The spread of coronavirus continues to increase in most parts of the country. The peak has not been reached yet but is expected in the next few weeks, the National Institute of Public Health (FHI) states.

In its latest weekly report, the FHI writes that the removal of the remaining corona measures on Saturday, February 12, may intensify the epidemic’s growth.

The FHI’s models indicate that the infection trend is increasing. They state that high infection rates change the R-number quite quickly, and that it is now probably close to 1.3.

“The model foresees an infection peak in the next few weeks,” the FHI noted in its report.

Warns against high sickness absence

The FHI estimates that the winter wave, driven by the omicron variant, will probably increase. Although the variant leads to less severe disease, more patient admissions can be expected. 

At the same time, the FHI expects a moderate increase in admissions to the intensive care units.

“The winter wave will continue to place a significant burden on the health service as a result of many patients and high sickness absence. The municipalities and hospitals must use the next few weeks to vaccinate more people and prepare for large sickness absence levels and more patients,” the FHI noted.

Hospital admissions

Last week, 137,762 corona cases were registered in the Norwegian Surveillance System for Communicable Diseases (MSIS), an increase of 7% from the previous week. However, significant changes in the testing system affect the new figures.

A very low proportion of those who tested positive for corona (0.16%) was admitted to the hospital. The reason may be that the omicron variant causes less serious illness and that people are well protected through vaccination, the FHI added.

To date, 550 new patients have been reported to be hospitalized with COVID-19 detected in week 6, with 54% of them having COVID-19 as the main cause of hospitalization.

Source : © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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