Epidemiological update: Omicron variant of concern (VOC) – data as of 6 December 2021 (12.00)

Epidemiological update

As of 6 December and since 5 December 2021, 30 additional SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant of concern (VOC) cases have been confirmed in the European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA), contributing to an overall total of 212 confirmed cases to date. Cases have been reported by 18 countries: Austria (11), Belgium (9), Czechia (1), Denmark (32), Finland (7), France (25), Germany (15), Greece (1), Iceland (12), Ireland (1), Italy (9), Latvia (2), the Netherlands (18), Norway (19), Portugal (34), Romania (2), Spain (7), and Sweden (7) according to information from public sources.

One new EU/EEA country (Latvia) has reported the Omicron variant, and a number of probable cases are currently under investigation in several countries.

Based on publicly available sources, the majority of confirmed cases have an epidemiological link to cases with a history of travel to African countries, with some of those having taken connecting flights at other locations between Africa and Europe. Several EU/EEA countries (Belgium, DenmarkSpain) detected cases without an epidemiological link to areas where community transmission of the Omicron variant is documented or presumed. This indicates that undetected community transmission could be ongoing in these countries. Finland reported cases with travel history within the EU/EEA (Sweden).

All cases for which there is available information on severity were either asymptomatic or mild. No deaths have been reported among these cases so far. These figures should be assessed with caution as the number of confirmed cases is too low to understand if the disease clinical spectrum of Omicron differs from that of previously detected variants.

Countries and territories outside of the EU/EEA have reported 693 confirmed cases. The 29 countries reporting confirmed cases are: Argentina, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Ghana, India, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, Mexico, Nepal, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates, the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Overall, globally there have been 905 confirmed cases reported by 47 countries.