According to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), despite having a higher transmissibility level than Delta variant, a preliminary study found that those infected with omicron variant are 50% to 70% less likely to be require admission to hospital. People with the variant are estimated to be between 31% and 45% less likely to attend A&E compared with the Delta variant
Health Secretary Sajid Javid welcomed the latest data as promising but urged the public to remain cautious over the Christmas break, adding it was still too early to determine next steps.
This is a preliminary analysis, so we continue monitoring the data hour by hour, added Javid, who stressed that the number of hospitalized patients goes on increasing, with the risk the avalanche overwhelms health services.
Out of the new positive cases reported in recent hours, 16,817 are omicron variant, which has infected as many as 90,906 people in less than a month.
In addition to the infections, the UKHSA reported on Thursday new 147 deaths, so the country´s death toll jumped to 147,720.