BA.5 in Italy

Italy had raised alarm bells in my head on 2/28/20. I went back and read what I wrote and am honestly surprised at just how accurate it turned out to be. We also didn’t seem to pay attention to warnings like this:

We are getting another warning from Italy now. BA.5 is more likely to cause more severe acute disease like we saw in waves prior to omicron.

“The cases of pneumonia caused by the SarsCoV2 virus that require assisted ventilation return to increase in Italy and the most recent of the Omicron sub-variants, BA.5, is responsible: this was told to ANSA by the national president of the Emergency Health Service 118, Mario Balzanelli. ‘We are starting to see things we no longer saw: while previous versions of Omicron spared the lower airways, we are now starting to see pneumonia caused by Omicron BA.5, which is able to reach the pulmonary alveoli…Viral forms of pneumonia requiring assisted ventilation’ are observed.”

We are on the threshold of a big tipping point from which I suspect the healthcare system will not recover. This substrain appears to evade immunity, and in combination with more severe disease, means much higher inpatient and ICU bed demands.

It almost seems poetic that we have the worst superspreader event happening right now since the start of the pandemic. People aren’t wearing masks and are travelling all over the country over Independence Day weekend. People flexing their independence and not taking into account their impact on others around them is going to deal a very painful blow.

One response to “BA.5 in Italy

  1. Deborah Santor

    We are in for a world of hurt. Just read the paper by Rosemary Boynton in Science on immune escape and Immune imprinting. Very difficult to see a good ending to this story anytime soon.

    Meanwhile, the US is partying like it’s 1984 or on cruise ship party for the end of the world. I feel like I am in a dystopian movie with no end in sight.

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