South Africa Passes Peak of Latest Omicron Variant Wave, Research Says

- 24 December 2021 00:03 WIB
Illustration: Empty hospital room (Unsplash/Adhy Savala)
Illustration: Empty hospital room (Unsplash/Adhy Savala)

JAKARTADAILY.ID - As a nation at the forefront of the Omicron wave, South Africa has been closely watched by the world as it tries to understand what may come next.  However, a decline in coronavirus cases in South Africa suggests the country has passed the top of the Omicron variant's infections.

"The drop in new cases nationally combined with the sustained drop in new cases seen here in Gauteng province, which for weeks has been the center of this wave, indicates that we are past the peak," said Marta Nunes, senior researcher at the Vaccines and Infectious Diseases Analytics department of the University of Witwatersrand, as quoted by AP News on Wednesday (December 22, 2021).

A national high of nearly 27,000 cases was reached last week, but the number dropped to 15,424 cases on Tuesday. This decline began earlier in Gauteng, South Africa's most populous province with 16 million residents.

In mid-November, the province of Gauteng witnessed a substantial increase in its COVID-19 cases, which was later discovered to be the new severely mutated Omicron variant. Omicron, which is far more transmissible, then swiftly established control in South Africa

Adding to the indications that South Africa's Omicron surge may be on the wane, a study of health care professionals at the Chris Hani Baragwanath hospitals in Soweto also shows a surge followed by a sharp decline in the cases of COVID-19.

Despite the positive news, experts say, South Africa's experience with Omicron might not necessarily serve as a model for countries that have higher vaccination rates and less natural exposure.

Editor: Mukhtar Wijaya

Source: apnews,


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