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Covid-19: Omicron variant cases increase to 16

At least 16 of the island’s 35 active coronavirus cases are of the Omicron variant, it was announced last night.

It means the number of active Omicron cases has gone up from two when figures were released on December 9.

The news came as 20 people tested positive from among 6,762 test results that came back to health officials.

The active cases are all being monitored by public health officials and none are in hospital.

There were 24 active cases listed in last Thursday’s update.

Health officials said 11 of the new cases had come in from overseas.

Eight of the remaining nine cases were classed as on-island transmissions and one was listed as under investigation.

For the imported cases, 92 per cent were in fully vaccinated people.

For on-island cases or those under investigation, 90 per cent were found in fully vaccinated people – a reversal of earlier trends where most were found in unvaccinated people.

Variant typing is only available for 28 of the active cases.

But Omicron now accounts for the majority of known cases.

A further 12 people have been found to have the Delta variant.

Four of the latest cases were logged on Wednesday, six on Thursday, two on Friday and eight on Saturday.

There have been nine recoveries since last Thursday.

The seven-day average of the island’s real-time reproduction number is 0.30.

Kim Wilson, the health minister, reminded the public that new travel regulations went into effect yesterday.

She warned that the virus “thrives on human contact” and said with the holidays approaching, “we must continue to follow public health guidance”.

A spokeswoman for the health ministry said officials were not considering a clampdown in the run-up to the festive season “at this time”.

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Published December 14, 2021 at 7:59 am (Updated December 14, 2021 at 2:50 pm)

Covid-19: Omicron variant cases increase to 16

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