Wastewater study: Coronavirus levels decreasing across Estonia

Wastewater plant.
Wastewater plant. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

This week, the amount of coronavirus in Estonian wastewater decreased in all regions of the country. Although all regions have some coronavirus spread, the southern and southeastern regions now have significantly fewer infections, the University of Tartu announced on Friday.

"It has changed in a week, the amount of coronavirus has decreased significantly from a week ago. There has been a big drop in finding coronavirus in wastewater," said lead researcher and University of Tartu antimicrobial technology professor Tanel Tenson.

Compared to last week, there are fewer regions on the map with a high or very high rate of coronavirus spread, Tenson said. At the same time, there are no regions without any spread and the virus is still spread out across Estonia.

The professor noted that the decrease was stable across Estonia. "If we look at graphs by region, I would say there is a decrease in all regions," Tenson said.

The southern and southeastern regions have also seen a decrease in spread with the situation considerably improving in Põlva and Tõrva, which have recently been hit hard. "I do not even know how to point out [regional] differences, to be hones. The differences are smaller and there are no critical regions in Estonia currently," Tenson said.

He added that he can now say that the third wave of the coronavirus is regressing. "This is indicated by the fact that we are seeing a sharp decline of the amount of coronavirus in Estonia, both in larger and smaller settlements," the professor said.

Tenson noted that the first signs of regression were noted about four weeks ago. "It is possible that mass testing in schools played a part in helping curb the spread of infection," the professor said, emphasizing the importance of vaccinations.

Wastewater study results for November 29 - December 3. Source: University of Tartu


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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste

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