South Africa Sees Spike In Child Infections
Umer Jamshaid Published December 03, 2021 | 02:10 PM
Johannesburg, Dec 3 (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 3rd Dec, 2021 ) :Doctors in South Africa said Friday there had been a spike in hospitalisations among young children after Omicron swept through the country but stressed it was early to know if they were particularly susceptible.
The first cluster of cases centred around university students, and then spread quickly among young people who seem to have spread it to older people.
But scientists and health officials said they had seen increasing hospital admissions in children under five, along with higher positivity rates among children aged 10-14.
"The incidence in those under fives is now second-highest, and second only to the incidence in those over 60," she told a news conference.
Scientists cited several possible reasons. One is that children under 12 are not yet eligible for vaccines in South Africa. Doctors have reported anecdotally that both children and parents testing positive have not been vaccinated, she said.
"Preliminary data suggests Omicron is more transmissible and has some immune evasion," she said.
South African scientists on Thursday reported that the reinfections were three times as likely with Omicron, compared to the Delta or Beta strains.
Although generally patients are showing milder symptoms, Groome cautioned that the onset of serious illness would only be expected over the coming two weeks.
The country recorded 11,535 new cases Thursday, mostly in the epicentre Gauteng.
That is five times more than the reported cases just one week ago, when South African scientists alerted the world to the new variant.