- Sputnik International, 1920
Omicron COVID Strain
The new COVID variant was initially detected in South Africa and Botswana and sparked major concerns due to its high number of mutations (32). The WHO dubbed the strain Omicron and warned it may prove to be more transmissible and dangerous than other coronavirus variants.

Every Country in Scandinavia Breaks Daily Infection Records Amid Omicron Surge

© AP Photo / NTB SCANPIXFILE PHOTO: The National Institute of Public Health's new app Smittestopp (Infection Stop) for infection tracking is pictured, in Oslo, Norway April 16, 2020. Picture taken April 16, 2020
FILE PHOTO: The National Institute of Public Health's new app Smittestopp (Infection Stop) for infection tracking is pictured, in Oslo, Norway April 16, 2020. Picture taken April 16, 2020 - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.01.2022
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The Omicron strain has a greater dispersibility compared with the previously dominant strains, yet is associated with fewer health risks. Major Omicron waves have been expected by medical authorities in all the Nordic countries this winter. Norway even warned that it is “impossible to be stopped”.
The Omicron-driven COVID-19 wave has seen the Nordic nations break their daily infection records.
A total of 38,759 new cases of COVID-19 have been registered in Denmark on Wednesday, setting yet another record since the start of the pandemic in the country of just over 5.8 million. The record had also been broken the day before, when the figure was 5,000 lower; the day before that, the daily case count was 10,000 lower.
Christian Wamberg, the head doctor at the intensive care unit at Copenhagen’s Bispebjerg Hospital, ventured that transmission is present throughout the community but doesn't give rise to the population becoming terribly ill, as long as the number of hospitalisations and especially the number of patients in intensive care doesn't increase as markedly.

“That is probably due to the vaccines and that the Omicron strain is not as dangerous”, Wamberg told TV2.

Meanwhile, in Norway, a total of 15,987 new COVID-19 infections have been registered over the last 24 hours. The previous 24-hour record was set barely a day ago when 15,367 infections were registered amid a rising trend and several broken records in a row.
The National Institute of Public Health (FHI) warned that a more contagious sub-strain of Omicron was rising rapidly in Norway.
Meanwhile, just days ago, 37,886 new cases of COVID-19 were registered in Sweden, also the highest daily figure since the very start of the pandemic. Overall, some 100,000 cases have been registered in the country of more than 10 million people in only four days.
Given the societal spread of the disease, doctors warned that whoever gets common cold symptoms is likely to be infected with Omicron.

“If you have a cold now, you are sick with Omicron. Expect it”, Johan Styrud, chief physician at Danderyd Hospital in Stockholm and leader of the Stockholm Medical Association, said. He also lashed out against the practice mass testing, calling it meaningless. “Everyone who has a cold is basically positive”, he told the trade newspaper Läkartidningen.

A similar take was shared by Norway's Assistant Health Director Espen Rostrup Nakstad.

“With the high infection rates we are having right now, it is very likely that you have the Omicron variant if you get common cold symptoms,” Nakstad told the newspaper Dagbladet.
The Omicron strain, first reported in South Africa, has a significantly greater dispersibility compared with the previously-dominant Delta strain. At the same time, it is believed to yield fewer health risks. Major Omicron waves have been expected by medical authorities in all the Nordic countries this winter. Norway's FHI warned that it is “impossible to be stopped, but may be possible to be dampened”.
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