What is very disturbing for us is what is happening with the coronavirus in France and Italy, where a new sub-variant has appeared and "moved" upwards very progressively.

This is a new sub-variant of Omicron and the number of deaths is increasing from it, mathematician Prof. Ognyan Kunchev from the Institute of Mathematics and Informatics at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences said in an interview for BTA.

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Omicron - the new coronavirus variant 1025

This is how he responded to a question about whether the COVID-19 pandemic is subsiding and ending, or is it the other way around, after there is an increase in the number of infected cases in China.

According to Prof. Ognyan Kunchev, this new sub-variant of Omicron is not yet available in Germany and Austria, but it will appear after the Christmas holidays, when many people gather in one place and if the restrictions are not respected.

Prof. Kunchev: The high waves of COVID-19 passed at the beginning of the year

"The new sub-variant is slightly more contagious than the previous ones, but there is not much mortality, or it is the same as with the regular Omicron. This new variant is relatively mild in the infected, but there are many cases of mild COVID-19 and after a month or two thromboses and thrombi appear, as well as disorders of the autonomic nervous system. This is in patients with a mild form of COVID-19, but it turns out to be very insidious, and after it diseases are unlocked that a person did not even have. It is very dangerous when thrombi or blood clots occur," explained Prof. Kunchev. 

People who have co-morbidities should take precautions and wear protective masks, he urged.

When asked whether the upcoming Christmas and New Year holidays, the many people returning to our country from abroad and the lack of measures will not lead to an increase in cases of COVID-19, Prof. Kunchev said that if the number of deaths is seen, it will it is clear that since June - in just three months, 500 people have died in our country from COVID-19.

This was in June, July and August, when there was a summer "boom" of the coronavirus, the mathematician added. 

According to him, it is not good now that the measures have been completely lifted, and holidays such as Christmas and New Year are coming up.

"Attention should be paid to people who have concomitant diseases, and it is good for them to at least take precautions and wear protective masks. However, these should be masks with good protection and worn in smaller spaces, for example shops and in public transport. It is good to avoid establishments where there are many visitors," recommended Prof. Ognyan Kunchev.  

When asked if it is possible to talk about the end of the COVID-19 pandemic at all, since new sub-variants are emerging, the mathematician stated that it cannot be said that there is such an end.

"And by the strictest definition, you can't say that, because every day several people die," the scientist said.

When asked if there is a possibility that this new sub-variant of Omicron, which appeared just during the holidays, will spread in our country as well, Prof. Kunchev answered that "it will come right around the holidays and will intensify after the New Year".

The new Omicron sub-variant is expected to come to our country from the countries where many Bulgarians work and study.

"This sub-variant of Omicron is about to come to us from outside - through France and Italy, and its roads usually pass through Germany and Austria. In Bulgaria, we have the most connections with Germany and Austria, and with Great Britain. In these countries there are many Bulgarians who work and study at universities and are about to return to our country for the Christmas and New Year holidays," said Prof. Kunchev 

Asked what caused this "boom" of people infected with COVID-19 in recent weeks in China, which was also accompanied by protests against the restrictive measures, Prof. Ognyan Kunchev noted that there are relatively good measures there and people wear masks where must.

"But in China, in a certain region, when the cases become several - two-three-four, immediately the respective region is closed and the authorities want to localize the 'fire' at the very beginning. This is the so-called zero COVID policy, which is applied in China", Prof. Kunchev commented and added that these measures caused the protests in the country.    

Omicron - the new coronavirus variant

Omicron - the new coronavirus variant