No match for most new Covid strains in Switzerland

There is growing demand from pregnant women in Switzerland to be vaccinated against coronavirus according to the health authorities. Keystone/Alexandra Wey

Nearly 1,000 cases of infections with a new strain of coronavirus have been found in Switzerland so far.

This content was published on January 25, 2021 - 17:32

The British variant accounts for just over 470 cases and only 16 cases of infections with the South African strain have been identified to date according to Federal Office of Public Health.

No cases of infections with the Brazilian strain have been found, health officials told the Swiss news agency, Keystone-SDA.

However, nearly 490 infections with mutated strains do not match with any of the three variants.

There are concerns that new strains are more transmissible and could cause a surge in infections and that the vaccination campaign in Switzerland could be further delayed.

The health authorities say they expect Pfizer/BioNTech to send new supplies to Switzerland in the next few days. Shipments had to be reduced because of changes to its manufacturing processes.

Vaccination programmes in nursing homes had to be cut postponed as a result, but experts said Pfizer/BioNTech would boost production by the end of April.

Meanwhile, the health office has adapted its vaccination policy for pregnant women who suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure or are overweight.

The office now asks these patients to get the jab. Pregnant women are not more likely to be infected with Covid-19, according to the Swiss association of gynaecologists. But they are more vulnerable to a heavy coronavirus infection.

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