Despite the presence of Omicron, the Delta variant is still present in Belgium: “It’s surprising”

If it had been predicted that all SARS-Cov-2 contaminations would be due to the Omicron variant at the end of last year, it is surprising to note that there are, at present, still nearly 15% of infections that are related to Delta. “Hospitals across the country must therefore continue to take this variant into account,” said Dirk Ramaekers, head of the Vaccination Taskforce, during a press briefing on Saturday.

According to the latest figures from the Sciensano Public Health Institute, between January 5 and January 11, the Omicron variant accounted for 86.4% of infections. Predictions that the Omicron variant would be fully dominant at the end of last year have therefore not fully materialized. “An estimated 15% of new contaminations by the Delta variant are estimated. Whether this is good or bad news depends on how you look at it. However, it would seem that Delta is more pathogenic than Omicron”, stressed Mr. Ramaekers.

Despite the expansion of Omicron, the Delta variant therefore continues to circulate and this has an impact on the health care system, also points out Mr. Ramakers. “Our hospitals must continue to take this variant into account. The situation is changing rapidly, so we will have to see what the next few weeks have in store for us. The vaccination strategy must also take into consideration the fact that the Delta variant does not yet belong to the past,” he concluded.

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