Estonia's coronavirus wastewater level stable, Omicron strain detected

The University of Tartu.
The University of Tartu. Source: Vladislava Snurnikova/ERR

The level of coronavirus in Estonia's wastewater is stable across the country but the Omicron stain has been detected in several places, the latest weekly monitoring study by the University of Tartu shows.

Over the past week (December 6-10), the number of settlements with moderate virus levels has decreased and there have been slightly more samples with very high virus content.

Lead researcher of the study, Professor of Technology of Antimicrobial Compounds of the University of Tartu Tanel Tenson, said the index describing the average situation in Estonia shows a stable overall situation.

No regions are completely free from the virus yet. Over the week, the virus amounts have slightly increased in Harju County and in central Estonia. The situation in south Estonia remains stable.

An analysis of the virus strains in wastewater samples showed the presence of small quantities of the Omicron variant in several settlements.

"As this research method is still in development, all we can say now is that the new virus strain has emerged in different parts of Estonia. Next week's analyses will allow us to assess the accuracy of these measurements and the rate of spread of the new strain," Tenson said. 

Results of the wastewater survey December 6–10, 2021. Source: University of Tartu.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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