Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation predicts huge spread of Omicron

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Given immune breakout and transmissibility, Omicron will soon reach all countries: IHME report

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), an independent center for global health research at the University of Washington, released a research report on Omicron, a variant of SARS-CoV-2.

Comparing the Omicron variant to the Delta variant, IHME research indicates that the Omicron is more transmissible and that with 40-60% immune escape, it combines to lead to a rapid increase in the number of reported cases. .

A much larger fraction of infections are symptomatic – probably 40% for Delta and earlier variants 90-95% for Omicron.

However, he also shared that based on the best available data, the infection-hospitalization rate is considerably lower (note that the infection-hospitalization rate is not the hospitalization rate), probably 90- 96% lower than that of Delta. The death rate from infection is considerably lower, probably 97-99% lower than Delta’s.

Research also predicts that around 3 billion infections will occur over the next 2 months. This is as many infections as those observed during the first 2 years of the pandemic.

The peak of transmission is expected to be in mid-January with more than 35 million infections worldwide per day, nearly three times the peak of the Delta wave in April.

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