NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

During the week ending on Christmas Day, Swedish health officials reported the number of COVID-19 cases increased by 14 percent compared to the week prior. Officials say the increase looks set to continue.

36 percent were unvaccinated.

In terms of the number of cases per 100,000 inhabitants, the number of cases was significantly higher in the unvaccinated group than the vaccinated.

Since the beginning of December, the Swedish Public Health Agency has been monitoring the spread of the omicron variant using the faster typing-PCR method, while monitoring with whole-genome sequencing continues. The results from the typing PCR analyzes of samples from the country’s regions have not yet been fully reported for week 51, but indicate that the proportion of cases that then consisted of omicron varied between 3 and 51% in the country’s regions.

The trend is clear: the proportion of omicron infections is rising, and the proportion of cases consisting of omicron is expected to continue to increase.

Occupancy in healthcare has increased but is still lower than in previous periods of high spread of infection during the pandemic. To date, 52 new intensive care patients with confirmed covid-19 have been reported during week 51. In the last four weeks, the number of intensive care units per 100,000 inhabitants was twelve times higher among the unvaccinated than among the vaccinated. The number of confirmed confirmed cases of covid-19 remains low compared with previous periods of high transmission.

Although we have seen an increase in the number of people who need care due to covid-19, the vaccines mean that there are much fewer now compared to previous periods of high infection spread. This shows the importance of even more people being vaccinated, and that those who are now offered a refill dose also take that dose, says state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell.

Vaccination work has continued, and 29 percent of everyone in the country who is 18 years and older has received a booster dose. Among those who are 65 years or older, 79 percent have received a booster dose up to and including 28 December.