Warning that anyone who catches Covid can be re-infected with the virus just FOUR WEEKS later after new variants BA.4 and BA.5 hit Australian shores
- Covid sub-variants BA. 4 and BA. 5 can re-infect Covid patients in 28 days
- Australian Health Protection Principal Committee issued a warning on Friday
- The AHPPC advised reducing the re-infection window from 12 to four weeks
- There were 31,406 Covid cases and 13 deaths in Australia in the past 24 hours
Australians have been warned that the new dominant Covid variants in the country BA. 4 and BA. 5 can re-infect patients a month after infection.
The warning was issued by the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee on Friday amid ‘significant community transmission’ of both Covid and influenza in the community.
The latest wave of Covid has been driven by Omicron sub-variants BA. 4 and BA. 5, with rates of re-infection soaring as many Australians report they’ve contracted Covid two or even three times.
Both BA. 4 and BA. 5 can re-infect Covid patients just 28 days after their previous infection, prompting the AHPPC to recommend reducing the re-infection window from 12 weeks to four weeks (or 28 days).
Australians have been warned that the new dominant Omicron sub-variants can re-infect patients in 28 days (pictured, people wearing masks in Melbourne)
The warning was issued by the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee as Australia experiences a new wave of both Covid and influenza (pictured, people line up at a Covid test site in Melbourne)
‘Given reinfections may occur as early as 28 days after recovery from a previous COVID-19 infection, the AHPPC advises that the reinfection period be reduced from 12 weeks to 28 days,’ their statement read.
‘People who test positive to Covid-19 more than 28 days after ending isolation due to previous infection should be reported and managed as new cases.’
The new advice means those who have recovered from the virus will be required to be tested again after 28 days if they’re experiencing symptoms.
There were 31,406 Covid cases and 13 deaths recorded across the country in the past 24 hours.
New South Wales had the highest number of infections with 8.670 cases in total, while Victoria followed behind with 7,934 infections.
The AHPPC claimed the number of cases across Australia is set to soar even further in the coming weeks as the BA. 4 and BA. 5 strains spread through the community.
‘We expect that this wave will lead to a substantial increase in infections, hospitalisations and sadly, deaths, at a time when our communities and health systems are already under strain,’ the committee said.
‘Without increased community and public health actions, this impact may be similar to that experienced during the BA.1 wave in January this year.’
Out of those case numbers, there are 4,094 patients in hospital battling Covid and 123 in ICU.
it is estimated that around 400,000 Australians are suffering the long-term effects of Covid.
There were 31,406 infections and 13 Covid-related deaths recorded across Australia in the past 24 hours (pictured, Covid patient being cared for by a nurse at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney)
Australians have been advised to stay up to date with their vaccinations. Adults aged 30 and older are now eligible for a fourth dose from Monday (pictured, Aussie swimmer Cate Campbell receives her vaccine)
The AHPPC advised people to stay up to date with their vaccinations, wear a mask when walking in crowds, ensure indoor spaces are well ventilated and practise good respiratory and hand hygiene.
Australians aged 30 and older are now eligible for a fourth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.
It comes after updated recommendations on vaccines from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI)
There will be 4.7million Aussies who can now opt to have a fourth shot from Monday.
The ATAGO recommended Australian adults aged between 50 to 64 years old receive a booster dose for the remainder of winter as Covid continues to spread.