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Highly Contagious Omicron BA 2 Spreading Quickly in Thailand

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The highly contagious Covid-19 Omicron BA 2 subvariant has been detected in 18.5% of Omicron cases examined over the past week, the Department of Medical Sciences reported yesterday.

Dr. Supakit Sirilak, the director-general of the Department of Medical Sciences, said

his department examined 567 Omicron cases from Feb 5 to 11 and found 18.5% were of the Omicron BA 2 subvariant and the rest were BA.1.

Dr. Supakit said there were some indications that BA 2 spreads faster than BA.1 when examining cases in other countries, but that there was no significant difference between BA.1 and BA.2 when it comes to severity and vaccine avoidance.

During the same period, 19% of 42 imported Omicron cases were found to have Omicron BA 2.

Omicron BA 2 more dominant subvariant

It is estimated that BA 2 has been detected in 57 countries and may replace BA 1 in India, Denmark, and Sweden. BA.2 has already surpassed BA 1 in Denmark and may replace BA 1 in Thailand due to its more rapid spread.

The strain was first discovered in Thailand among tourists earlier this year. There are a few cases of other variants of Covid-19 in the country today.

According to the World Health Organization, Omicron has already become a dominant variant of Covid-19 worldwide, and booster vaccines may prevent death and severe illness from Omicron BA 2.

From Jan 30 to Feb 4, Omicron cases accounted for 94.2% of the Covid-19 cases in Thailand, while Delta cases accounted for 5.8%. Over the same period, Omicron was found in 99.4% of the infected arrivals.

Bangkok had the highest number of accumulated Omicron infections with 6,641 cases including 2,132 local infections, followed by Phuket with 1,286 cases, Chon Buri with 1,240, Roi Et with 670, Samut Prakan with 590, Surat Thani with 511, Maha Sarakham with 508, Kalasin with 419 and Khon Kaen with 410.

Related CTN News:

Omicron Covid-19 Fears Hinder Domestic Travel Plans

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Covid-19 Cases in Thailand Surge in 2022

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