Covid to peak in Hong Kong, US sees rise in elderly hospitalisations: Report

 - Sakshi Post

New Delhi, Oct 10 (IANS) Waning vaccine immunity is likely to spur Covid-19 infections in the coming months in Hong Kong, warned a government pandemic adviser.

Hong Kong is seeing a fresh surge in Covid cases due to the XBB variant and the daily hospitalisation rate stands at about 120 cases, the South China Morning Post reported.

According to David Hui Shu-cheong, Professor of Respiratory Medicine at Chinese University, the positive rate of nucleic acid testing was 15 per cent based on Hospital Authority data.

Shu-cheong noted there was a high chance of another peak in cases between this month and December, possibly overlapping with a flu outbreak, the report said.

"There are about 100 to 120 cases requiring hospitalisation on a daily basis, with the XBB variant accounting for 98 per cent," Shu-cheong was quoted as saying.

"Given that the previous peak occurred between April and May this year and antibodies (from vaccines) tend to decline after about six months, another one is estimated to occur between this month and the end of the year," he said.

Moreover, the professor stated that the Covid-19 jabs administered in the city did not specifically target the XBB strain, unlike the third-generation vaccines produced by Pfizer and Moderna which used the sub-lineage XBB.1.5 as their primary antigen.

He suggested that a third-generation XBB shot could serve as a booster jab, which may not only boost antibody levels against the XBB lineage, but also provide coverage against the EG.5.1 and BA.2.86 variants circulating currently.

Meanwhile, Covid-19 hospitalisations "continue to predominantly affect" adults 65 and older, according to a new report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The report said that from January to August, adults 65 and older accounted for about 63 per cent of all Covid-19 hospitalisations, 61 per cent of intensive care unit admissions, and 88 per cent of in-hospital deaths associated with the infectious disease.

The report called on the elderly people to "reduce their risk for severe Covid-19 by receiving recommended vaccinations, adopting measures to reduce risk for contracting Covid, and to seek prompt outpatient antiviral treatment after a positive SARS-CoV-2 test result".

"We’ve always known that the elderly as well as individuals with comorbidities are disproportionately affected. So this is really consistent with a lot of information that we’ve seen previously,: Dr. Dan Barouch, Director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, who was not involved in the new report, was quoted as saying by CNN.

"The elderly and people with comorbidities really should be encouraged to get the fall booster," he added.

Disclaimer: This story has not been edited by the Sakshi Post team and is auto-generated from syndicated feed.

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