New numbers should add up to the end of the Covid-19 disaster: ...

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New numbers should add up to the end of the Covid-19 disaster: Winde

Western Cape premier bases optimism on research showing Omicron’s reduced rates of hospitalisation or death

Cape Town bureau chief

Prior infection and vaccination have reduced the severity of Covid-19 during the Omicron-driven fourth wave, according to a study of nearly 17,000 patients in the Western Cape.

A team of 46 scientists led by Mary-Ann Davies of the provincial health intelligence unit estimated the Omicron variant’s reduced virulence may account for about a quarter of the reduced risk of hospitalisation or death compared with Delta, the variant behind the third wave.

Reporting their findings on Wednesday in a preprint (https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2022.01.12.22269148v1) that has not yet been peer-reviewed, the team said antibody protection — or seroprevalence — from previous infection was estimated at 70%, and was particularly strong “in poorer communities where social distancing is challenging”...

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