Omicron dominates third wave,found in 67% cases: K’taka health minister
Karnataka health minister Dr K Sudhakar on Friday said that Omicron was the dominant variant in the third wave of Covid-19
Karnataka health minister Dr K Sudhakar on Friday said that Omicron was the dominant variant in the third wave of Covid-19. According to the data released by the minister, 67.5% of cases in the third wave found during genome sequencing were of Omicron variant and 26% of Delta variants. In comparison, 90%of the cases in the second wave belonged to the Delta wave, the minister added.
The data released by the minister showed that out of 7,512 cases sent for genome sequencing till January 22 (since the beginning of the pandemic) 4,431 cases were of Delta variant, while Omicron accounted for 1,115 cases.
A further break-up of the data stated that till December 2021, 5,659 samples were sent for sequencing, out of which 4,027 were found to be Delta variant. During this time, 66 cases of Omicron variant were reported.
However, from December 1 to January 22, 1,853 samples were sent for sequencing, out of which 1,049 were found to be Omicron variant and 404 were of Delta variant.
Earlier on Friday, the minister had announced that the Delta variant of the coronavirus and its sub-lineages make up 75% of the Covid-19 cases reported in the state. This is followed by the Omicron variant. However, after the error in analysis (since Omicron was reported only in December) was pointed out, the minister issued a clarification with the new breakup.
Meanwhile, Karnataka chief minister (CM) Basavaraj Bommai said that the government will review the coronavirus situation in the state soon, and after going through the expert committee report, hold a meeting within three to four days to take a decision regarding the curbs.
“We (ministers) have discussed several issues, including Covid situation, how to manage it in the coming days, representations given by various organisations (for relaxations) and the functioning of schools and colleges among others. We have referred it to the experts’ committee,” he said.
Last week, the Karnataka government had decided to lift the weekend curfew, while deciding to continue the night curfew between 10 pm to 5 am every day, and all other Covid curbs, including 50% capacity rules in public places.
The Karnataka health department has also directed the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and other district administrations to follow purposive testing for Covid-19 for early detection of symptomatic cases. The testing strategy is in line with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)’s new guidelines.
The health department, in the directive, has said that only symptomatic (cough, fever, sore throat, loss of taste and/or smell, breathlessness and/or other respiratory symptoms) individuals, at-risk contacts of laboratory-confirmed cases, and international travellers should be tested. The at-risk contacts of laboratory-confirmed cases should be tested based on their age and co-morbidities.
“In a hospital setting, testing may be undertaken as per discretion of the treating doctor, with the following considerations. No emergency procedure (including surgeries and deliveries) should be delayed for lack of a test. Patients should not be referred to other facilities for lack of a testing facility. All arrangements should be made to collect and transfer samples to testing facilities, mapped to the health facility,” the circular read.