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Sage data suggests Omicron patients leave hospital sooner, illustrated. 30 Dec
ecent Sage reports have stressed that we're still waiting on a major piece of information: the average stay in hospital for Omicron patients. It could be a game-changer. If the stay halves, the Covid-handling capacity of the NHS doubles and the risk of hospitals being overwhelmed falls quite a lot.
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A Sage paper dated 22 December [scrubbed] had some distribution graphs showing how many days Covid patients were spending in hospital. From this data, it's possible to calculate the average length of hospital stay, by age.

The Spectator data team has done so (methodology here) and it shows a significant drop in hospital stay for all ages: now about five days for all over-50s. This is less than half the previous time the over-80s were in hospital for, with significant reductions for all age groups.

reference
UKSA, "Omicron daily overview: 30 December 2021," 30 Dec
Counts of cases with confirmed S-gene, cases with confirmed S-gene Target Failure (SGTF) by TaqPath Laboratory PCR assay. SGRF refers to non-detectable S-gene and ≤30 CT values for N and ORF1ab genes (ie. "probable omicron" infection; cf. FDA "gene drop-out" pattern), especially unvaccinated hospital admissions.

Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling-Ops group, "SPI-M-O Consensus statement on COVID-19," 22 Dec

Whilst the estimates for the reduction in risk of hospital admission with omicron currently range from 15% to 80% lower than with delta, SPI-M-O has low confidence in any specific figure. At present there are few older people in the data used to estimate the severity of omicron and relative severity may differ between age groups. A 20% reduction would result in four times as many hospitalisations as an 80% reduction and would therefore require a very different policy response to achieve the same outcome.

Ferguson et al., "Report 50: Hospitalisation risk for Omicron cases in England", Imperial College, 22 Dec. SAGE collection

Stratifying hospitalisation risk by vaccination state reveals a more complex overall picture, albeit consistent with the unstratified analysis. Most intriguing is an apparent difference between those who received AstraZenca (AZ) vaccine versus Pfizer or Moderna (PF/MD) for their primary series (doses 1 and 2). Hazard ratios for hospital attendance with Omicron for those who received PF/MD as their primary vaccination schedule are similar to those seen for Delta in those vaccination categories, while Omicron hazard ratios are generally lower than for Delta for those who received AZ as their primary vaccination. Given the limited samples sizes to date, we caution about over-interpreting these trends, but they are compatible with previous findings that while protection afforded against mild infection from AZ was substantially reduced with the emergence of Delta, protection against more severe outcomes was sustained (2,3).
by Cat on Fri Dec 31st, 2021 at 01:25:32 AM EST
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