A recent Norwegian omicron outbreak at a Christmas party provides early anecdotal evidence of how the variants spread between people vaccinated and the severity of its symptoms, according to a recent report.
A renewable energy company in Norway ensured that all necessary safety precautions were in place before hosting its annual party, including inviting only vaccinated employees and requiring rapid testing the day before the party, according to Stian Tvede Karlsen, a spokesperson for the company.
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The party was held at an upscale Oslo restaurant for around 120 people, several of whom recently traveled to South Africa, where the company owns a solar panel business.
More than 50% have tested positive for COVID-19, of which 13 have confirmed to have the omicron variant, but none of the people have severe symptoms, according to the Wall Street Journal.
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The outbreak, which appears to be the largest omicron outbreak in the world outside of South Africa, is notable because it has occurred in people who have been vaccinated in a country where more than 80% of adults are fully vaccinated. , added the Journal.
Even though the outbreak spread quickly, the conditions at the party itself may have contributed, where guests were talking and mingling in a secluded setting for hours, which are ideal conditions for a party event. high-profile, said Alexandra Phelan, assistant professor of global and public health law and ethics at Georgetown University.
She added that the outbreak suggests that current COVID-19 vaccines do not prevent infections, but can prevent serious illness.
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“If they were of working age and young enough to party the night away, they were probably at low risk already,” said Phelan. “The big question that this is starting to add data to, at least anecdotal data, is immune evasion. “