INA – BAGHDAD
Iraqi Ministry of Health confirmed that Iraq has entered the peak of the pandemic wave, noting that 97% of the cases are the new mutant Omicron and admitted to hospitals and are not vaccinated.
"The symptoms of Omicron mutant are lighter than the previous mutant, according to what was proven by the studies and scientific research that monitored it since discovery on November 24th,” said the Director of the Public Health Department at the Ministry of Health, Riyad Abdel Amir, to Al-Iraqiya News TV, followed up by the Iraqi News Agency (INA).
He added, "The significant increase in the number of corona cases around the world confirms that Omicron mutant is rapidly spreading and its symptoms are concentrated in the upper respiratory tract (coldness - mild cough - high temperature) and in cases, depending on the patient's immunity, the virus may reach the lung and lower respiratory tract as pneumonia occurs which lead to death,”
“Globally, Omicron's deaths are less than the previous (Delta) strain, but on the other hand, there is great pressure on the health system due to the large increase in the number of cases. Yesterday, for example, France recorded more than 500,000 cases, and this puts great pressure," he added.
Regarding detecting the Omicron mutant, he said, "The identification of the strain is done by applying genetic tracking to the sample that is confirmed to be infected in a special device that can accommodate (96) samples, and this takes from a week to 10 days to know the type of strain in the sample accurately and is applied via Phase,”
Abdel Amir pointed out that "the methods of treatment and prevention are the same with all mutant, and currently 30% of infections are Omicron, as most of those infected with the strain of the vaccinated have mild symptoms, while the unvaccinated many cases require hospitalization,"
"The Ministry of Health found that the percentage of vaccinated hospital admissions is only 3%, while the rest, 97%, are unvaccinated, and this indicates that the vaccine is very effective in reducing the severity of infections," he stressed.
On the increase in the number of infections, he stated that "Iraq is now at the peak of the pandemic wave, and we do not believe that it will increase much, as currently we do not believe that the end of the current wave is near,"