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Omicron subvariant appears more contagious, but not more severe, Denmark says -Breaking


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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO – Guests relax with a glass outside Huks Fluks as coronavirus diseases (COVID-19), restrictions are eased in Copenhagen, Denmark, April 21st, 2021. Ritzau Scanpix/Emil Helms via REUTERS

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COPENHAGEN (Reuters). The Omicron Coronavirus subvariant BA.2 variant is the dominant one in Denmark. Magnus Heunicke from the Danish Health Ministry stated on Wednesday that it was more contagious then the BA.1 subvariant.

Heunicke said that there was no proof the BA.2 variant is more dangerous, however it could be more contagious.

The BA.1 strain currently represents 98% of global cases, but has been overtaken by BA.2, the dominant strain that emerged in January’s second week.

BA.2 was identified by the UK Health Security Agency, as an under-investigated variant. It could offer a potential growth advantage.

According to preliminary calculations, BA.2 might be 1.5x more infective than BA.1, according to Statens Serum Institut (SSI) in a Wednesday memo.

An initial study by the institute found no difference in risk for hospitalisation for BA.2 as compared with BA.1.

Tyra Grove Krause (SSI technical director) stated at the briefing that some evidence suggests that it’s more contagious than it appears, particularly for unvaccinated people, although it could also infect those who are vaccinated.

Krause suggested that this may mean that Denmark’s peak epidemic could extend into February, as previously predicted.

BA.2 cases also have been filed in Britain, Sweden, and Norway but in a smaller number than Denmark.

Tuesday’s announcement by Denmark of plans to remove COVID-19 from its horizon, February 1st was a surprise. This is despite the fact that daily infected numbers are at an all-time high.

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Mike Robinson
Mike covers the financial, utilities and biotechnology sectors for Street Register. He has been writing about investment and personal finance topics for almost 12 years. Mike has an MBA in Finance from Wake Forest University.