By Tamsin Brown • 27 December 2021 • 13:55
Spain sees first cases of people simultaneously infected with delta and omicron
Spain is seeing its first cases of people simultaneously infected with delta and omicron, as various cases have been detected in the north of the country.
The omicron variant has overtaken the delta variant as the greatest source of new infections around the world. Spain is currently facing its largest number of new infections since the coronavirus pandemic began, currently mostly caused by the delta variant, but omicron is spreading rapidly.
“In two or three weeks it could be the majority, causing more than 50% of new cases, and in a month or two it could be the dominant variant, displacing delta,” warns Sarai Quirós, a pulmonologist at Basurto University Hospital and coordinator of Respiratory Infections at the Spanish Society of Pulmonology and Thoracic Surgery (Separ), to the newspaper La Voz de Galicia.
There is another risk that has not previously been discussed much: coinfections with delta and omicron simultaneously. It is possible to be infected with both variants at the same time. Various pulmonologists have notified of the first cases of people with both variants in several autonomous communities in the north of Spain, although it has not been revealed where exactly.
There is currently no data that indicates whether this is more dangerous than infections of a single variant. “It is still too early to evaluate the situation because not enough time has passed to know if this combination is more serious or not and because there are still only a few cases,” explained Sarai Quirós. “We are concerned about the transmissibility of omicron,” she said, highlighting the importance of taking precautions, following recommendations and getting vaccinated.
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Originally from London, Tamsin is based in Malaga and is a local reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering Spanish and international news.
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