Omicron has higher impact on the elderly

Coronavirus outbreak

Despite strong levels of vaccination among older Americans, COVID-19 killed them at vastly higher rates during this past winter’s Omicron wave than it did the previous year in the country, The Seattle Times reported on Tuesday.

“Almost as many Americans 65 and older died in four months of the Omicron surge as they did in six months of the Delta wave, even though the Delta variant, for any one person, tended to cause more severe illness,” said the report.

While overall per capita COVID-19 death rates have fallen, older people still account for an overwhelming share of them, according to the report.

“This is not simply a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” said Andrew Stokes, an assistant professor in global health at the Boston University who studies age patterns of COVID-19 deaths. “There’s still exceptionally high risk among older adults, even those with primary vaccine series.”

COVID-19 deaths, though always concentrated in older people, have in 2022 skewed toward older people more than they did at any point since vaccines became widely available, added the report.