Anyone who comes back to Austria from southern Africa must register, test and be in quarantine. Other countries are acting even more strictly – and are already reporting confirmed infections.
A new mutant of the coronavirus, B.1.1.529 alias Omikron, is currently spreading from South Africa. The World Health Organization calls it “worrying” – numerous national government votes in favor. As well Austria, where a suspected case is currently being examined: Anyone staying in South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia or Eswatini should return as soon as possible, according to the Foreign Ministry. Entry from these seven countries was prohibited, and flights were banned from landing.
Those who return from southern Africa must “register at the latest at the immigration control at the airport, announce their whereabouts in this region, show a negative PCR test, when and a ten-day quarantine, including those who have been vaccinated and recovered,” said the airport spokesman Vienna in Schwechat, Peter Kleemann, on Sunday in the Ö1 “Morgenjournal”. Soldiers of the armed forces have therefore already moved out to carry out the controls. The military is also keeping an eye on transfer airports, they say – including Doha, Dubai and Amsterdam.
Is even stricter Israel Before, where to date an infection with Omikron has been confirmed in one person, seven further cases are currently being examined: The government has banned foreigners from all countries from entering the country for 14 days. Anyone who comes to Israel – including vaccinated Israelis – WILL be isolated for three days, according to the Jerusalem Post, if the result is negative. Unvaccinated Israelis are isolated for seven days if the test is negative.
Great Britain, the two Omicron cases on Saturday, also imposed strong measures. All those entering the country must therefore be in quarantine. A PCR test is required on the second day after entry, and the quarantine must not be left until the test result is negative.
die similarly agitated German government, after the first cases of infections became known. South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique, Eswatini, Malawi and Lesotho are now classified as virus variant areas. Airlines are only allowed to carry German citizens or people living in Germany from there to Germany. But it is not a flight ban. A two-week quarantine obligation applies to those entering the country – including those who have been vaccinated and those who have recovered. They cannot be shortened by negative tests either.
In the Netherlands 61 out of 600 passengers on two flights from South Africa tested positive for the corona virus on Friday. The certainty followed on Sunday: 13 of them were infected with Omikron, as Health Minister Hugo de Jonge said. Those affected were isolated in a quarantine hotel. Also in Australia The suspicion has been borne out: Two travelers tested positive for the variant after arriving in Sydney on Saturday evening, the New South Wales State Department of Health announced on Sunday. Both showed no symptoms and are fully vaccinated.
Omikron has now officially achieved Denmark, Italy, Czech Republic, Belgium and Hong Kong.
Patients in South Africa so far not in mortal danger
Those people who have been infected with Omikron in South Africa and are being treated there are not cumbersome according to the local medical association SAMA. The chairwoman of the South African Medical Association, Angélique Coetzee, said the cases identified were not serious, but the investigations were confirmed at a very early stage. “The patients usually complain of the body and fatigue, extreme pain, and we see it in the younger generation, not in the younger people,” Coetzee told the broadcaster “BBC”.
In the “Telegraph” the doctor added that you have to worry that the new version of older people, who also suffered from diabetes or heart disease, could hit a lot harder.
At a glance
The omicron variant of the coronavirus (B.1.1.529) was first detected in southern Africa. The World Health Organization (WHO) classifies them as “worrying”. The EU health authority ECDC speaks of serious concerns that Belgium was the first European country on Friday to confirm an Omikron case.
(Hell / APA / AFP / dpa / Reuters)