Dozens more Omicron Covid-19 cases detected in Denmark

A total of 261 cases of Covid-19 caused by the Omicron variant have now been detected in Denmark.

Additional test centres have opened in Denmark with military and emergency service personnel assigned to assist in their operation.
Additional test centres have opened in Denmark with military and emergency service personnel assigned to assist in their operation. Photo: Frank Cilius/Ritzau Scanpix

That means 78 new cases were detected between Sunday and Monday.

The figures come from national infectious disease agency State Serum Institute, SSI.

Danish authorities are now able to detect the variant more quickly with special variant PCR tests, rather than relying on genome sequencing.

“State Serum Institute is finding an increasing number of Omicron cases in Denmark,” the agency said in a statement.

The variant PCR tests are now considered reliable enough for detection of Omicron that they can form the basis for a confirmed case, SSI said.

SSI director Henrik Ullum said that Danish Omicron cases were now not all linked to recent travel to South Africa, where the variant was first detected and flagged in late November.

“There are now ongoing infection chains where the virus is found in people who have not recently traveled or are contacts to travelers,” Ullum said on Sunday.

Authorities will now focus on slowing the spread of the variant, he said.

“The time we win should be used to vaccinate as many as possible. High immunity makes our society more robust if the Omicron variant spreads further,” he said.

Health authorities have also extended contact tracing for Omicron, asking the contacts of contacts of suspected cases to isolate and test for the coronavirus on days one, four and six after the possible exposure. This applies regardless of vaccination status.

READ ALSO: One billion Danish kroner assigned for ‘extraordinary’ health service spending

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Covid-19: Danish case numbers fall by almost one fifth

Fewer new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in Denmark, with last week’s total 19 percent reduced compared to the week before.

Covid-19: Danish case numbers fall by almost one fifth

The latest report from the State Serum Institute (SSI), the Danish infectious disease agency, states 10,777 new cases were detected in the week commencing July 25th, equivalent to 183 cases per 100,000 residents.

The number of PCR tests administered also decreased 15 percent compared to the preceding week, however.

Declining viral loads in the wastewater system also suggest there’s a lower burden of infection in the country, according to SSI.

In the same period, new Covid-positive hospital admissions fell nearly a quarter, with a significant decline in the elderly population. 

There was also a significantly lower prevalence of infections among care home residents and social care sector staff, SSI states.

Last month, age concern charity Ældre Sagen called for the Danish Health Authority to bring forward planned booster vaccinations to care home residents after a 29 percent increase in new hospital admissions with the virus, with 60-89 year-olds particularly affected.

Booster vaccinations will be offered to everyone aged 50 and over this autumn.

READ ALSO: Who is eligible for a fourth Covid vaccine dose in Denmark and when?

60 deaths among people who were infected with Covid-19 occurred last week, 10 more than the preceding week.

“But this is not a sign of excess deaths in the population in general,” SSI says in the report.

Omicron sub-variant BA.5 is still responsible for the lion’s share of Covid cases in Denmark, accounting for 92 percent of positive results in the week of July 18th. 

“There is no sign of concerning spread of other subvariants,” SSI writes.