Covid-19 in Bulgaria: Omicron variant found in 52 of 505 samples sequenced by NCIPD

Bulgaria’s National Centre for Infectious and Parasitic Diseases (NCIPD) said on January 10 that it has found the Omicron coronavirus strain in 52 out of 505 samples taken from Covid-19 patients in the country, with the rest identified as having the Delta strain or its sub-variants.

The samples had been taken over a period of time ranging from November 25 2021 to January 3 2022 and came from 26 out of Bulgaria’s 28 districts.

The Omicron strain was found mainly in samples taken from December 20 on, with the exception of one sample dated December 13, which was delivered for sequencing on December 29, NCIPD said.

Those samples came from nine different districts, compared to just two in the previous batch of samples sequenced by NCIPD, which found the first cases of the Omicron coronavirus strain in Bulgaria. The city of Sofia accounted for 38 out of 52 Omicron cases.

Among the patients with the Omicron strain, 44 were undergoing treatment at home, seven were in hospital and one had recovered, as of December 20-January 5, the NCIPD statement said.

Of the 453 patients with the Delta strain or its subvariants, 305 were undergoing home treatment, 117 were in hospital, 16 had recovered and 15 had died, as of December 20-January 5.

NCIPD said that 64 out of 453 cases showed the Delta strain of the virus, collectively designated B.1.617.2 by the World Health Organisation.

The other cases were attributed to separate individual lineages of that variant, with the most numerous being AY.43 (84), AY.4 (58), AY.9.2 (43) and AY.9.1 (24). Twenty-seven other subvariants accounted for the remaining 180 samples sequenced by NCIPD.

The largest number of samples, including both the Omicron and Delta strains, came from the city of Sofia (107), followed by the districts of Plovdiv (61), Rousse (55), Bourgas (48) and Pazardzhik (37).

(Photo: Military Medical Academy)

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The Sofia Globe staff

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