Nearly 95 per cent of swab samples examined in the latest round of genome sequencing in Mumbai were found infected with the Omicron variant of COVID-19, the city civic body has said.
The Omicron variant had triggered the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic in late December 2021 and it now ebbed in the Maharashtra state capital.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in a release issued on Monday appealed to citizens to continue following COVID-19-appropriate behaviour despite a huge drop in daily cases.
Mumbai reported 192 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, the lowest daily count since December 13, 2021, and two fresh fatalities linked to the infection, while 350 more patients were discharged following recovery, the civic body said.
Citing results of the ninth round of genome sequencing in the city, the BMC said out of the total 190 samples which were tested, 180 (94.74 per cent) were found infected with Omicron, and the remaining samples with the Delta variant and other strains of coronavirus.
Significantly, out of the 190 patients from Mumbai whose swab samples were sent for genome sequencing, 23 have died and 21 of them were infected with the Omicron variant, the release said. In the previous round of genome sequencing carried out in December-end, of the 280 samples collected from BMC’s jurisdiction, 248 had tested positive for Omicron, while the remaining had other variants of coronavirus.
According to the release, in the latest ninth round of genome sequencing, the civic body had examined 282 samples. Out of these, 190 samples were from Mumbai and the remaining from other parts of Maharashtra. The BMC said out of the 190 patients, 74 patients (39 per cent) were in 61 to 80 years age group, followed by 41 patients (22 per cent) in the age bracket of 41 to 60 years, 36 (19 per cent) aged 21 to 40 years, 22 patients (12 per cent) in 81 to 100 years age group, and 17 patients ( 9 per cent) in 0 to 18 age group.
Of the 190 infected patients, 13 were less than 18 years of age. Out of them, 11 were infected with Omicron, as per the release. The BMC said 106 of the 190 patients needed hospitalisation. Of these, five had taken only the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, 50 had taken both the doses, while 51 had not taken any dose.
Of these 106 patients, only nine required oxygen support, while 11 were admitted in the ICU, the civic body said. Out of the 23 patients who died, 21 were over 60 years of age and suffering from co-morbidities, the release said, adding that 15 of them had not taken any dose of COVID-19 vaccine. Also, 22 patients died within seven days of developing symptoms, the BMC said.
Genome sequencing is a scientific process that helps in understanding the difference between two variants of the same virus. It makes it easier to determine the exact line of treatment for the infected patients.