BA.5 Variant Already Spreading in Taiwan: Experts 昨確診較上週同期增4.2% 估BA.5已散播

There were more than 24,000 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Taiwan on the 17th. Some doctors believe this means the BA.5 variant is spreading in the community. In addition, there are 100 cases of MIS-C among children, of which more than 60 percent are kids under 5 years old. Compared to other countries, MIS-C usually affects school-age children, most commonly 8- to 10-year-olds.


Taiwan recorded more than 24,000 new cases of COVID-19, an increase of 4.2 percent over the same period last week. The Central Epidemic Command Center believes the epidemic will heat up in late August. Some doctors say that the BA.5 variant and the number of confirmed cases in neighboring countries have hit a new peak recently. It is impossible for Taiwan to stay clear of it. At present, a positive quick screening is considered a positive diagnosis in the country. The number of confirmed cases per day is estimated to be about 50,000 to 60,000 in the next wave of the BA.5 variant. The number of unconfirmed cases in the community will be probably even more.  

Chiang Kuan-yu, Physician, Integrated Healthcare Dept., Taipei City Hospital: “Rapid screening has replaced PCR tests. And it also depends on whether people are more aware of symptoms. We're now a little bit closer to that state of coexistence with the virus. Thus, catching those confirmed cases is not that strict, just like in other countries.”

In addition, the number of cases of the multi-system post-inflammatory group in children, referred to as MIS-C for short, has continued to increase. This year, the total number of cases has already reached 100. Among them, there are 62 cases under the age of 5, more than 60 percent. Compared to other countries, MIS-C usually affects school-age children, most commonly 8- to 10-year-olds. In this regard, some doctors believe that this is likely due to the fact that children under the age of 5 were vaccinated later.

Zen Lin, Chair, ROC Primary Care Association: “If one is infected, they will all be infected. But MIS-C is less common in those who have been vaccinated. Those without vaccinations are more prone to MIS-C. So I still think kids better get vaccinated as soon as possible.”

The doctor emphasized that Taiwan's coverage rate of the booster has exceeded 70 percent. Combine this with the infection rate, herd immunity is at least 30 or 40 percent. However, the virus shouldn't be taken lightly. People over the age of 50 and under the age of 5 are considered at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Parents are urged to get their children vaccinated as soon as possible to reduce complications after infection.

 

 

 

新冠本土17日週三新增2.4萬多例,比上週同期增加4.2%,疫情指揮中心預估,8月下旬疫情將升溫。有醫師表示,鄰近國家近期都因BA.5疫情、確診數再創高峰,台灣不可能置身事外,且目前國內是採「快篩陽視同確診」,下波BA.5為主的疫情,每日通報病例數差不多5、6萬,社區黑數恐怕更多。

北市聯醫整合照護科醫師姜冠宇表示:「就是因為快篩取代PCR,而且也是看民眾是不是對症狀有所自覺的方式,有一點接近那種共存的狀態,所以說對於那個,抓那些確診數其實是不會這麼嚴格,就跟別的國家一樣。」

此外,國內兒童多系統發炎症後群、簡稱MIS-C個案持續增加,今年累計已達百例,其中5歲以下有62例、超過6成,跟國外常見8到10歲年齡層不符,對此有醫師認為,這很可能跟5歲以下幼兒較晚接種疫苗有關。

基層醫療協會理事長林應然表示:「感染的話,他們都會感染,可是打過針(疫苗)的比較少發生MIS-C,沒打針的比較容易發生MIS-C,所以我還是覺得,最好大家趕快去打預防針。

醫師強調,民眾第3劑疫苗涵蓋率已超過7成,加上感染率,群體免疫至少有3、4成,但仍不可掉以輕心,50歲以上及5歲以下是重症高危險族群,因此呼籲家長盡快帶孩子打疫苗,以降低染疫後併發症。
 

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