Why the US could have a higher death rate from omicron than other countries | TheHill – The Hill

One researcher is predicting that the U.S. will experience the highest death rate from the omicron variant than many other developed nations, despite the variant being less severe. 

Eric Topol, a professor of molecular medicine at Scripps Research Institute, tweeted a series of data points that compared the daily COVID-19 case count and deaths per million people for seven large nations. Topol said the U.S. has a much higher baseline of deaths per capita because there was a relative lack of containment during an earlier surge of the delta variant and a lack of vaccinations. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently warned that current increases in omicron cases are likely to lead to a national surge of new infections that could exceed previous peaks. The agency said its modeling data indicated a large surge of infections could begin in early January 2022, which is in fact being observed in cities across the U.S. 

Last week, the state of Florida experienced an 849 percent increase in COVID-19 cases, and before that, New York state reported the highest number of COVID-19 cases in a single day since the pandemic began nearly two years ago.  


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At a national level, the U.S. reported more than 1 million COVID-19 cases in a single day on Jan. 4, the highest single-day total recorded since the pandemic began.  

The grim numbers out of the U.S. stand in stark contrast to other countries, including South Africa where the omicron variant was first detected. Salim Abdool Karim, South Africa’s top infectious diseases scientist, said last month that because more than 70 percent of the country’s population has been previously infected with other COVID-19 variants along with the fact that omicron’s level of severity is low compared to previous variants, South Africa was seeing a sharp decline in omicron cases 

“In South Africa, variants, even highly mutated ones, will run out of people pretty quickly. Pretty much by the end of last week it was running out of steam; there just aren’t enough people left to infect,” said Karim. 

Data from John Hopkins University and Medicine shows that the U.K. may also be leveling off its peak of COVID-19 cases, showing a steady decline in the number of daily cases over the last week. The U.K. government also says that about 90 percent of people aged 12 and up have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and 83 percent have gotten their second dose. About 62 percent of the U.K. population has received their booster shot too. 

The U.S. is behind when it comes to vaccination efforts in comparison to the U.K., with data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reporting only about 75 percent of the country having received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. About 62 percent are fully vaccinated and only 37 percent have gotten their booster dose.  

Scott Gottlieb, former U.S. commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, also noted that the U.S. vaccination rates aren’t as strong as the U.K. saying in a tweet, “our protracted wrangling over boosters may have sowed confusion, sapping consumer interest.” 

COVID-19 deaths are also by far the worst in the U.S., surpassing all global nations tracked by John Hopkins. More than 800,000 people have died in the U.S. from COVID-19, with Brazil the only country coming close to that amount, recording more than 600,00 COVID-19 deaths. 

Some scientists don’t think the coronavirus pandemic will ever be completely eradicated, and that instead the pandemic will transition into an endemic. That’s a state where COVID-19 would continue to circulate, but people would have gained enough immunity to it from vaccinations and natural infection that there would be significantly less transmission. 


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SOUTH AFRICAN SCIENTIST THINKS SHE MAY HAVE SOLVED THE MYSTERY OF LONG COVID-19 

EXPERTS SAY THE NEXT COVID-19 VARIANT IS ‘JUST AROUND THE CORNER’ 

OMICRON SURGE COULD PEAK BY END OF JANUARY 

AS OMICRON SURGES HERE’S WHAT THE LATEST SCIENCE SAYS ABOUT THE VARIANT 

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Why the US could have a higher death rate from omicron than other countries | TheHill – The Hill

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