This week, 157,683 new Covid-19 cases were reported in Switzerland, down 24% from the 208,542 cases reported a week earlier. The fall in the reported number of Covid-19 patients hospitalised was more muted, falling 5% from 518 to 492 across the week.
Covid-19 deaths were also down. Across the week, 70 Covid-19 related deaths were reported, a figure 19% lower than the 86 reported the week before. However, the reported number Covid-19 patients in intensive care (ICU) in Switzerland rose slightly from 194 to 198 over the last 7 days.
This week, Virginie Masserey, who heads infection control and vaccinations at the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) said that we have possibly reached the highest level and see a downward trend.
In England, which seems to be ahead of Switzerland in epidemiological development, a second peak that followed the main Omicron peak now appears to be trending down, according to data from the Zoe database, which collects realtime information from around 800,000 people in England. At the same time hospitalisations and deaths continue to fall in England. According to Tim Spector, who is involved in running the project, these recurrent peaks are likely to represent the future shape of the disease.
When the English data is broken down by age group it appears that those aged 18-34 were the main driver of the first Omicron peak and those aged 0-17 largely drove the second peak. In addition to the reduced virulence of Omicron, the younger age profiles among the majority of those infected recently could be another reason why hospitalisations and deaths are down, while higher vaccination rates among those over 55 may be helping to keep cases and hospitalisations down among this older age group.
In Switzerland, the age breakdown of recent cases is similar to England. Those aged 0-39 are well represented among those infected. One big difference is the higher number of infections among those aged 40-59 in Switzerland compared to England.