Omicron variant at 46% in Europe. This was reported by the ECDC, an EU agency based in Stockholm, in its periodic update on Covid-19, published a little while ago. The twenty-one EU and European Economic Area countries that have carried out sequencing activities of Sars-CoV-2 in appreciable quantities, in the period between 20 December 2021 and 2 January 2022 reported a prevalence of the Omicron variant of 46, 4%, doubled compared to the previous reporting period, it says. There is still “limited” evidence, the agency recalls, that the severity of Omicron-induced disease is lower than that associated with the Delta variant, and “preliminary studies” indicate that current vaccines “may be less effective against Omicron contagion. , even if they continue to provide protection against hospitalization and serious illness “. Read also The ECDC also warns that “given Omicron’s exponential growth and high number of cases, any potential benefit resulting from a lower severity of” Omicron-associated symptoms “will be short-lived and outweighed by the large number of severe outcomes. in time”. The Omicron variant was identified, as of 13 January, in all EU and SEA countries. The epidemiological situation is “worrying” or “very worrying” in 28 EU and SEE countries, due to the spread of the variant identified for the first time in South Africa. While the notification rate of positive cases was 2,008 per 100 thousand inhabitants in the first week of 2022 (with a range from 227.6 to 5,572, depending on the country), which has been growing for three weeks, that of deaths was 49.2 per million inhabitants (range from 10.2 to 142.7), stable for seven weeks. An increasing trend in deaths was recorded in 9 countries.