Covid-19: Omicron share of Danish cases continues rise

The number of cases of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 in Denmark increased by 1,512 on Wednesday to reach a running total of 6,047.

A further 8,773 cases of Covid-19 were registered in Denmark on Wednesday.
A further 8,773 cases of Covid-19 were registered in Denmark on Wednesday. File photo: Philip Davali/Ritzau Scanpix

Some instances of the variant may not be included in the latest data due to delays, the infectious disease agency State Serum Institute said in a statement.

The variant comprised 1.7 percent of new Covid-19 cases in the country on December 1st. That had risen to 15.6 percent by December 11th.

Health authorities earlier this week said they expect the variant to become dominant in Denmark within the coming days.

“We are unfortunately seeing new Omicron cases increase day by day as expected. The increase is also making overall case numbers increase,” SSI director Henrik Ullum said in a statement.

“This confirms that the Omicron variant will present a large challenge to our society this winter,” Ullum added.

10 persons in Denmark are admitted to hospital with the Omicron variant as of Wednesday, according to SSI.

8,773 new infections in total were registered on Wednesday, a new record for the pandemic. 508 people are in hospital, 10 more than on Tuesday and the first time since February that the total has exceeded 500.

READ ALSO: Denmark changes rules for Covid-19 contact tracing

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Covid-19: Danish authorities ’not concerned’ after new subvariant detected

A new subvariant of Covid-19 has been detected in Denmark. Health authorities say they are monitoring the situation.

Covid-19: Danish authorities ’not concerned’ after new subvariant detected

The new variant was first detected in India around three months ago and has now been detected in Denmark for the first time with two confirmed cases, news wire Ritzau reports.

Health Minister Magnus Heunicke confirmed the variant had been found in Denmark in a Twitter post on Saturday.

The variant, BJ.1, is a subvariant of the existing Omicron form of the coronavirus and was first registered in India on July 2nd. It has since been detected in four other countries.

“Two cases of the new Covid-19 subvariant BJ.1 have been found in Denmark,” Heunicke wrote.

“It is completely expected that BJ.1 would appear in Denmark and the State Serum Institute [national infectious disease control agency, ed.] is not currently concerned but is following the situation closely,” he said.

It is currently unclear whether BJ.1, also termed BA.2.10.1, can be expected to cause more serious symptoms than the current dominant form of Omicron.

“BJ.1 has more mutations to the spike protein than subvariants of the dominant BA.5, but the importance of these mutations is not known for certain,” Heunicke wrote.

The most recent infection trends report, issued last week by the State Serum Institute, stated that infection numbers in people aged 60 and over had increased during the preceding week. Infection numbers have been otherwise stable in all age groups in recent weeks.

Denmark currently only recommends a PCR test for Covid-19 for people at risk of serious illness who suspect they have the virus.

Last week’s infection trends report noted that BJ.1 was yet to be detected in Denmark.