The Institut Pasteur released this Wednesday, January 12, a study that describes several scenarios about the evolution of the Omicron variant in France. Among the different models of the researchers, the most optimistic indicates in particular a peak of hospitalizations down despite a high transmissibility.
Omicron is increasingly well known to researchers. The Covid-19 variant, which breaks records for daily contamination in France, has been closely studied by the Institut Pasteur, which unveils a study this Wednesday, January 12. Several scenarios are thus modeled to get an idea of the influence of the Omicron variant on our hospital system in the coming weeks.
Three scenarios were therefore modeled, in particular in comparison with the initial virus and the Delta variant:
- First scenario : Omicron is much less severe than the first Covid but is transmitted much more.
- Second scenario : Omicron is as severe as the first Covid and is transmitted in an “average” way.
- Third scenario : Omicron is as severe as the first Covid but is transmitted much more.
The first scenario is considered the most likely by researchers.
“In the scenario where the severity of Omicron is twice that of the historical virus (-77% compared to the Delta variant), with an advantage of intermediate transmission, the peak of hospitalizations could reach 2700 daily hospitalizations without adjustment This peak would rise to 1900 (-28%) and 1400 (-48%) daily hospitalizations if the French reduced their contacts by 10% and 20% “, indicates the report. Basically, hospital admissions will be acceptable, even more so and if the French take drastic measures.
What does the most pessimistic scenario predict?
In the intermediate scenario where the severity of Omicron is “similar to that of the historical virus (-54% compared to the Delta variant), the epidemic could remain manageable with measures of intermediate intensity in the scenarios where the advantage of Transmission of Omicron is intermediate or low, with a peak of hospitalizations not exceeding 2,500 daily hospitalizations if the French reduce their contacts by 20% “, reveals the Pasteur Institute. Clearly, if Omicron is as severe as the very first Covid-19, and if it is transmitted barely more than Delta, it could be contained provided that the French reduce their contacts more intensively.
The third scenario is the most pessimistic: “with a high transmission advantage” and a severity comparable to the first Covid, and if the population does not take any action, daily hospitalizations could exceed 8,000 per day, the number of conventional beds occupied would reach 50,000 and people receiving critical care would exceed 8,700, well above the thresholds reached in previous waves. The hospital system would be drowned.
And if contacts were then reduced at best by 20%, the number of daily admissions would reach 5,000, above the threshold for the first wave of 2020.
“In all scenarios, the peak of hospital admissions is expected in the second half of January, with a maximum impact on bed occupancy at the end of January, during February. The peak of infections is expected in mid-January”, say researchers from the Institut Pasteur. We must now hope that the right scenario unfolds.