Nigeria on Thursday recorded 423 cases of COVID-19. Here are five updates about the pandemic this Friday.
OMICRON BECOMES DOMINANT VARIANT IN GERMANY
Germany’s Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases says Omicron has become the dominant COVID-19 variant in the country.
In its weekly report, released on Thursday, it said the variant accounted for 73.3% of cases compared with 44.3% seven days ago.
Delta, which was for a long time the more prevalent variant of the virus, now accounted for just 25.9% of cases.
“In the coming weeks we expect a strong increase in infections with the Omicron variant,” the report said.
“First studies point to a lower share of hospitalizations in those who are fully vaccinated compared to infections with the Delta variant.”
SPAIN OFFERS FOURTH DOSE OF COVID VACCINE TO THE VULNERABLE
A fourth COVID-19 vaccine dose will be offered to vulnerable citizens in Spain.
The health ministry said those included are people with cancer, those who have had a transplant or are receiving dialysis.
The latest dose will only be given five months after a third dose. For the population at large, a third dose will be available for people aged 18 and over.
It is currently only available to those over 40.
NORWAY EASES COVID RESTRICTIONS
Norway is easing COVID-19 restrictions, partly reversing a ban on serving alcohol in bars and restaurants.
“We can ease some restrictions, but not all,” Jonas Stoere, the Norwegian prime minister, told a news conference on Thursday.
Bars and restaurants will be able to serve alcoholic drinks until 11pm local time, a partial reversal of the total ban introduced in December.
A surge in Omicron cases in late November was traced back to a super spreader event at a restaurant in central Oslo, which led the Norwegian government to reintroduce some nationwide restrictions.
NIGERIA RECORDS 423 CASES
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has reported 423 new cases of COVID-19.
According to the agency’s update for January 13, the new cases were recorded in 16 states and the federal capital territory (FCT).
A breakdown of the cases is shown as follows:
The agency said 364 people were discharged after they recovered from the infection.
There were no deaths recorded on Thursday, leaving the fatality toll at 3,092.
With the new confirmed cases, Nigeria has now recorded a total of 250,009 infections and 221,203 recoveries.
COURT SUSPENDS ORDER TO WEAR MASKS OUTDOORS IN PARIS
A French court has suspended an order that makes masks wearing on Paris streets compulsory.
The mandate was imposed by the Paris prefecture, the local arm of the interior ministry, and had been in place since 31 December to curb Omicron cases.
The ruling comes a day after another court in Versailles, near Paris, suspended a similar order in the Yvelines region, deeming the mandate “an excessive, disproportionate and inappropriate infringement of personal freedom”.