Recent data in the U.K. indicate that a sore throat is increasingly the most prevalent sign of COVID-19 infection, whereas fever and loss of smell are becoming less frequent.
The move can raise questions regarding the fall. People may transfer the infection unknowingly as the coronavirus’s primary symptoms alter.
Tim Spector, a professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London, told The Independent that “many people are still adopting the official standards concerning symptoms, which are erroneous.”
Spector is a co-founder of the COVID ZOE app, a component of the biggest COVID-19 study ever conducted. Researchers have utilised information from the app to monitor changes in symptoms during the pandemic.
According to him, two-thirds of those who have a sore throat currently develop COVID. Since fever and a loss of smell are now quite uncommon, many elderly persons might not realise they have COVID. If tested, they would dismiss it as a cold.
COVID- At the end of September, the number of 19 infections in the U.K. jumped 14%, according to figures from the country’s Office for National Statistics. During the week ending September 20, more than 1.1 million people tested positive, up from 927,000 cases the week before. In England and Wales, the numbers are still rising, but Scotland and Northern Ireland are showing a less clear pattern.
According to Spector, the fall wave of infections has undoubtedly reached the U.K. He anticipates that Omicron variants will continue to change and avoid protection from prior infections and vaccinations throughout the winter.
Public health professionals have expressed worries about monitoring the most recent variants and COVID-19 trends, however, because to the decreased testing and surveillance of new variants.
According to Lawrence Young, a professor of virology at the University of Warwick, “we can only discover variations or know what’s coming by doing sequencing from PCR testing, and that’s not going on anything like the extent it was a year ago.”
Due to the lack of free tests, he claimed that people will contract a variety of diseases over the winter. “There will be a problem.”
According to the most recent information from the European CDC, COVID-19 cases are also rising across Europe, which may be the first regional uptick since the BA.5 wave. (In the past, growth in Europe has foreshadowed a pattern that will soon emerge in other regions.)
According to the report, cases among people 65 and older increased by 9% from the previous week. Although 14 of the 27 nations in the European region have seen an increase, hospitalizations are now constant.
The European CDC stated that these increases “are expected to be mostly driven by changes in population mixing following the summer vacation, with no indication of changes in the distribution of circulating variations.”
According to a weekly CDC update released on Friday, the majority of COVID-19 readings are continuing declining in the U.S. for the time being. A daily average of 47,000 cases are reported, which is a 13% drop from the previous week. Deaths decreased 6%, and hospitalizations decreased 7%.
Test positive also increased last week, going from 9.6% to 9.8%. According to wastewater surveillance, 41% of U.S. locations recorded an increase last week, while 53% reported a decrease in virus levels.
The new Omicron-targeted booster shot was recommended by the CDC for the next fall season. The new vaccine has been given to about 7.5 million Americans. In the United States, 50% of the eligible population has not yet gotten a booster dose.
In addition to providing additional protection for you and others around you against all lineages of the Omicron variety, bivalent boosters help restore protection that may have declined since your last dosage, according to the CDC. The greater the number of people who maintain their immunisation records, the greater the likelihood that we will avoid a potential COVID-19 sickness outbreak later this fall and winter.