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Two positive coronavirus cases have been identified in Estonia with suspicions of it being the Omicron variant

Two positive coronavirus cases have been identified in Estonia with suspicions of it being the Omicron variant

Two positive coronavirus cases have been identified in Estonia which may represent the first recognised arrival of the Omicron variant. In the first case, the individual arrived in Estonia from Dubai. In the other case the country of departure was the republic of South Africa, with a transfer in Frankfurt. Both individuals received positive test results on Friday and are self-isolating at home.

Based on the information which is available to the Health Board, the ‘S’ gene mutation which is characteristic of the Omicron variant was found in tests for both of these passengers, but the samples will be sequenced for final confirmation. The Health Board has contacted both infected individuals and has mapped out their journeys and potential close contacts. Both patients who are suspected of having been infected with the Omicron variant are vaccinated.

The individual who visited the republic of South Africa arrived in Estonia on 1 December via Frankfurt (using flights LH573 and LH882), and exhibited symptoms which are characteristic of coronavirus one day later. On 3 December, the individual received a positive test result. The Health Board advises all other passengers who were on the aforementioned flights to monitor their health and to take a PCR test.

The passenger who flew in from Dubai arrived in Estonia on 2 December, but by a charter flight not by a scheduled flight. Therefore the individual did not come into close contact with any other passengers. The passenger developed mild symptoms on the day of their arrival and a PCR test taken on 3 December which returned a positive result.

The Health Board would like to remind everyone that any individuals (including children) who arrive in Estonia from countries which have been classified as high risk thanks to the presence there of the Omicron variant, ie. the republic of South Africa, Botswana, Malawi, Lesotho, Swaziland (eSwatini), Namibia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Egypt, or Turkey, must take a PCR test immediately after their arrival.

It is also strongly recommended that everyone takes a PCR test after their arrival from any other countries which are not presently classified as Omicron-risk countries. All Estonian residents who arriving from abroad can take the PCR test free of charge. Further information can be found at the following address: koroonatestimine.ee/en

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