A new coronavirus variant has emerged in the Czech Republic

The first case of a new sub-variant of coronavirus, designated BA.2.76, has emerged in the Czech Republic. It is close to the sub-variant BA.2.75, which is called centaur. It does not appear to protect against disease. The State Health Institute (SZÚ) informed about this

In the Czech Republic, 96 percent of coronavirus positive tests are now the more infectious sub-variants of omicron BA.5 or BA.4. According to available information from abroad, sub-variant BA.2.76 escapes well from neutralizing antibodies.

The coronavirus epidemic began to accelerate in the Czech Republic in early June. The daily increase in cases in the past week has already exceeded the 2000 mark twice. This is mainly the more infectious submutations of BA.4 and BA.5.

According to the SZÚ, however, the omicron sub-variants BE and BF, prevalent in Germany and Britain, are also rising. “However, further information on these variants is not yet available, nor is it clear how they will fare in competition with BA.2.75,” the SZÚ said.

Válek: There will be no restrictions

Health Minister Vlastimil Válek (TOP 09) described the current wave of coronavirus as expected, although he said it was not expected to be so strong. He ruled out the widespread introduction of anti-epidemic measures.

“The number of hospitalized patients and those with a serious course is not increasing substantially. The key point is that most patients do not have major problems and lie at home. The virus has changed, and the fact that a person catches COVID even twice a year is becoming a reality,” Válek said during a visit to the Hradec Králové University Hospital today.

Vaccination and masks

He considers preventive vaccination and wearing masks or respirators to be the two main weapons against the spread of coronavirus. Barbora Macková, director of the National Health Institute, agrees.

“Wearing mouth and nose protection, ideally respirators of at least FFP2 makes sense wherever there is a high concentration of people and poor ventilation, and also wherever people are more susceptible to infection due to their health condition. So this applies particularly to public transport, health care facilities, and homes for the elderly,” she said.