Greater detail released on covid patients

11.01.2022 - 09:57
Mynd: Grímur Jón Sigurðsson / RÚV
Landspítali national university hospital has, for the first time, released detailed information on its COVID-19 inpatients; including which variant of the virus they have and whether they are in hospital due to covid or came in for other reasons. The data will be updated every Thursday and come in response to calls for more precise details, as Iceland tries to tackle the Omicron outbreak.

Thanks to the generally milder Omicron variant, scientists have increasingly been looking to hospital admission figures rather than daily infection numbers when assessing the progress of the pandemic.

The new data released yesterday show that of the 37 patients in hospital with COVID-19, 29 were admitted because of the virus, and that 31 were in isolation with active infection while six were recovering. 

11 of the patients have the Delta variant, including nine who are not vaccinated. Ten of the patients have the Omicron variant, including two with basic vaccination, six who have had boosters, and two who are not vaccinated. There are no details on which variant the remaining eight COVID-19 hospital patients have. 

Five patients have COVID-19 but were not admitted to hospital as a direct result. One of them has the Delta variant, three have Omicron, and it is not known which variant one has. The connection between covid and admission to hospital is not clear in the cases of three patients. 

A COVID-19 patient died at Landspítali due to the illness on Sunday, chief epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason confirmed in interview with Viljinn. There were therefore three fatalities this weekend. 

Þórólfur told RÚV yesterday that there have been between two and seven new covid hospital admissions per day and that the civil protection alert level could be increased to ‘emergency’ again. A memo of recommendations has been passed to the health minister and updated anti-contagion restrictions are expected to be announced after today’s cabinet meeting. Þórólfur told RÚV there is little room to relax restrictions right now, and there is anticipation that the health minister might announce stricter rules. 

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