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Omicron COVID-19 variant spreads faster but with less severe consequences

 - COVID-19 - Dec 23 SHARE ON:
Omicron COVID-19 variant spreads faster but with less severe consequences

Recent studies conducted in the UK and South Africa have concluded that the Omicron COVID-19 variant has less severe consequences on people’s health.

Early results have shown that hospital treatment is required less when individuals contract the Omicron variant, as opposed to other variants, with a decrease of up to 70% on occasion.

Despite this, concerns remain persistent because, despite Omicron having less severe consequences, high hospitalisation numbers may put pressure on national health care systems as infections continue to rise.

So far, the Omicron variant has not arrived in Malta as authorities continue to call for individuals to receive their booster jab.

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Serious traffic incident in Mosta leaves 19-year-old grievously injured; 2 with serious injuries

 - Local - Dec 23 SHARE ON:
Serious traffic incident in Mosta leaves 19-year-old grievously injured; 2 with serious injuries

On Wednesday evening, at around 9PM, the Malta Police Force was informed of a serious road traffic incident in Valletta Road, Mosta.

Preliminary investigations found that a 19-year-old Mosta resident was driving a Toyota Corolla, lost control and crashed into a Smart being driven by a 38-year-old woman who resides in Attard. Another 19-year-old from St. Paul’s Bay accompanied the Corolla driver, all of whom were seen by a medical team and members of Civil Protection.

The individuals were taken to Mater Dei via ambulance, with the St. Paul’s Bay resident was confirmed to have suffered serious injuries while the other two sustained grievous injuries.

Police Magistrate Dr. Leonard Caruana LL.D opened an inquiry as police investigations are currently ongoing.

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Omicron could have doubled risk of infection on planes

 - COVID-19 - Dec 22 SHARE ON:
Omicron could have doubled risk of infection on planes

Since the emergence of the Omicron COVID variant, aircraft passengers have become twice or even three times more likely to catch the virus. 

According to the top medical adviser t the world’s airlines, Omicron spread is making infection because of travel way worse. With the new strains being even more transmissible and since it became the dominant strain in just a few weeks, around 70% of all US cases are Omicron. 

While hospital-grade air filters on passenger jets make the risk of infection much lower on planes than in crowded places on the ground, Omicron is rapidly spreading despite all the precautions. 

Business-class may be safer than more densely packed economy cabins, says David Powell, a physician and medical adviser to the International Air Transport Association. Passengers, he said, should avoid face to face contact and frequently touched surfaces, sitting near each other while unmasked or during meals. 

The best protection, he said, is being vaccinated boosted, especially when flying. The protection that you give yourself rom an extra mask or not flying at all is probably less than the benefit you would get from being fully vaccinated and boosted. 

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Closing down catering industry not the way forward says association

 - Business - Dec 22 SHARE ON:
Closing down catering industry not the way forward says association

An association which represents restaurateurs has warned about the consequences which the catering industry could face should the sector be closed due to a surge of COVID-19. 

The Association of Catering Establishments (ACE) has highlighted its concern for the rise in positive cases, but said that statement and comments by entities and individuals on social media can be dangerous for the industry.

The association backed up Health Minister Chris Fearne’s focus on offering the vaccine and booster shots rather than considering further restrictions, which could close off food outlets. The rollout is the best way forward in view of the impact the closure would have. 

According to a recent survey, it pointed out, 18.7% of outlets had closed down permanently due to closures. Going back to such measures would be devastating for even more businesses, it said. 

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