Turkey issues Omicron warning as daily COVID infections surge – Reuters

[1/2] Members of the medical staff Selin Doner and Sefa Nacak treat a patient suffering from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the intensive care unit (ICU) of the Basaksehir Cam and Sakura City Hospital in Istanbul, Turkey November 25, 2021. REUTERS/Murad Sezer
ISTANBUL, Dec 28 (Reuters) – Daily new coronavirus cases in Turkey jumped beyond 30,000 on Tuesday for the first time since Oct. 19, data showed, as the health minister warned of the rapid spread of the Omicron variant.
Turkey recorded 32,176 cases and 184 deaths on Tuesday, health ministry data showed. Tuesday's cases are the highest since Oct. 12.
Turkey's daily case levels have been below or about 20,000 in December, down from about 30,000 in October. New infections surged 30% on Monday to above 25,000.
"Due to the rapid spread of the Omicron variant, it can be seen we are now entering a rising trend," Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter, urging Turks to get vaccinated and receive their booster shots.
At the weekend, Koca said that more than 10% of COVID-19 cases in Turkey were caused by Omicron. It announced its first six Omicron cases on Dec. 11.
Last week, Turkey's domestically developed COVID-19 vaccine, Turkovac, received emergency use authorisation from Turkish authorities. read more
Turkey has already administered more than 130 million doses of vaccines using shots developed by China's Sinovac and by Pfizer/BioNTech.
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France's Haute Autorite de Sante public health body advised the government not to use Valneva's VLA2001 COVID-19 vaccine as part of its wider vaccination strategy, although two rival products should be included as booster shots.
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