Oman reports 12 suspected cases of Omicron infection

The sultanate announces booster vaccinations for those over 18 and returns all indoor public venues to 50 per cent capacity

A healthcare worker prepares to administer the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the Omani capital Muscat on December 27, 2020. / AFP / MOHAMMED MAHJOUB
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Twelve people thought to be infected with the Omicron coronavirus variant have been admitted to hospitals in Oman, the country's health minister said on Wednesday.

“The Supreme Committee continues to follow up on all developments regarding the coronavirus and its report says there are currently 12 suspected cases of Omicron in the Sultanate of Oman,” Dr Ahmed Al Saidi told Oman Television.

The Ministry of Health also reported 20 new cases of Covid-19 and zero deaths in the previous 24 hours.

Oman's total number of cases has reached 304,761. The number of Covid deaths in the country is 4,113.

On Monday, the sultanate announced a booster vaccination programme for people over the age of 18.

The booster will be available to people who have already had two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine. The second dose must have been given within the past six months.

Oman's Ministry of Health has ordered all indoor public places, including malls, shops, schools, hotels and mosques, to return to 50 per cent capacity until further notice.

The Omicron variant has been reported in dozens of nations and the number of patients needing hospital care is likely to rise as it spreads, according to the World Health Organisation, with Africa accounting for 46 per cent of all cases globally.

Updated: December 16, 2021, 7:00 AM