Corona forecast for summer: infection numbers remain at the current level

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Currently, the Corona forecasting consortium predicts that new infection numbers in Austria will remain at current levels into the summer.

This is very high compared to previous years. It is “not expected that infection numbers will decrease to the levels of the summers of 2020 or 2021,” the experts of the forecasting consortium stressed in their weekly update on Wednesday. However, the two-week forecast for hospital-acquired infections shows a clear downward trend.

Corona‘s new infection figures in Austria stagnate

Until next Wednesday, the stagnation in new Corona infections is already apparent in the forecast interval. Both slight increases and slight decreases are possible, showing the graph of the forecast calculators of TU Vienna, MedUni Vienna, and Gesundheit Österreich GmbH (GÖG). A seven-day incidence in 320 to 520 cases per 100,000 population (68 percent confidence interval) is expected for the last forecast day. The mean is 400, which implies an enduring value to this week.

Seasonal effects dampen infection incidence

“The current dampening seasonal effects are countered by the progressive decline in acquired immune protection from new infection or reinfection. In addition, the April 16 relaxations have now taken full effect,” the researchers said, explaining the stagnant downward trend in new infections. For the summer, “a stagnation at the current level or a gradual fall increase in the medium term” is expected, the experts this time also looked further into the future.

On Wednesday, the seven-day average of new infections was 4,955 cases. Last year on the same date (May 11, 2021), there were 1,167 infections per day, with a decline through the summer, an APA survey shows. Two years ago, at this time, there were only 37 infections per day with consistently low levels through the summer months.

New omicron variant BA4./BA.4 at low levels in Austria

According to the forecast, the BA.4/BA.5 variants, already dominant in South Africa, were detected to a low extent in Austria. According to international observation data, these variants are likely to have a growth advantage over BA.1/BA.2/BA.3. However, they have not yet been detected sufficiently to be relevant for the present forecast; it was emphasized.

In recent weeks, there has still been a decline in cases. This continues to translate into a slightly declining hospital bed, experts said. A decrease from 853 to 601 infected in regular wards is expected from May 10 to May 25. The experts estimate that covid intensive care patients should decrease from 79 to 54 within the next two weeks.

  • sources: APA/vienna.at/picture: pixabay.com
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