From Iceland — COVID Cases Increasing In Iceland Despite Widespread Immunity

COVID Cases Increasing In Iceland Despite Widespread Immunity

Published June 20, 2022

Photo by
Mufid Majnun/Unsplash

The number of COVID-19 cases in Iceland is increasing, with around 200 people testing positive each day. But the true number is likely higher, the Directorate of Health cautions, because many people are using at-home tests instead of official ones.

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The Directorate of Health notes the increase in hospitalizations is also “significant.” There are currently 27 individuals hospitalized with COVID; two are in the intensive care unit, and one is on a ventilator.

Most of the individuals who have been hospitalized are over 70 years of age. Serious illness is most common in people who have received three or fewer doses of the COVID vaccine, so officials encourage at-risk people to get the fourth vaccine. Reinfections make up less than 10% of the cases diagnosed daily.

Just last month, the Directorate of Health announced the community has achieved “widespread resistance” to COVID-19. This was based on a study of 916 individuals in April that revealed 70-80% of people aged 20-60 years had antibodies to the virus. Only 50% of older individuals had antibodies to the virus at the time of the study.

Most cases detected recently are the omicron variant BA.2—known as the “stealth” Omicron variant because certain genetic mutations make it seem more like the Delta variant than the original Omicron variant. However, the omicron variant BA.5 is increasing in prevalence, according to the Directorate of Health.

Infection control measures like social distancing, wearing a mask, and hand washing are still good tools to prevent the virus from spreading.

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