Emergence of Omicron
On November 24, 2021, a brand new variant of SARS-CoV-2, B.1.1.529, was reported to the World Well being Group (WHO). This new variant was first detected in specimens collected on November 11, 2021 in Botswana and on November 14, 2021 in South Africa.
On November 26, 2021, WHO named the B.1.1.529 Omicron and categorised it as a Variant of Concern (VOC). On November 30, 2021, america designated Omicron as a Variant of Concern, and on December 1, 2021 the primary confirmed U.S. case of Omicron was recognized.
CDC has been collaborating with international public well being and business companions to study Omicron, as we proceed to observe its course. CDC has been utilizing genomic surveillance all through the course of the pandemic to trace variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and inform public well being apply. We don’t but understand how simply it spreads, the severity of sickness it causes, or how effectively accessible vaccines and medicines work towards it.
Regardless of the elevated consideration of Omicron, Delta continues to be the principle variant circulating in america.
The place has Omicron been Detected in america
CDC is working with state and native public well being officers to observe the unfold of Omicron. This map exhibits the states which have detected a minimum of one case of COVID-19 sickness attributable to the Omicron variant. Extra Omicron variant surveillance knowledge on CDC’s COVID Knowledge Tracker.
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What We Find out about Omicron
An infection and Unfold
- How simply does Omicron unfold? The Omicron variant probably will unfold extra simply than the unique SARS-CoV-2 virus and the way simply Omicron spreads in comparison with Delta stays unknown. CDC expects that anybody with Omicron an infection can unfold the virus to others, even when they’re vaccinated or don’t have signs.
- Will Omicron trigger extra extreme sickness? Extra knowledge are wanted to know if Omicron infections, and particularly reinfections and breakthrough infections in people who find themselves absolutely vaccinated, trigger extra extreme sickness or dying than an infection with different variants.
- Will vaccines work towards Omicron? Present vaccines are anticipated to guard towards extreme sickness, hospitalizations, and deaths on account of an infection with the Omicron variant. Nonetheless, breakthrough infections in people who find themselves absolutely vaccinated are prone to happen. With different variants, like Delta, vaccines have remained efficient at stopping extreme sickness, hospitalizations, and dying. The current emergence of Omicron additional emphasizes the significance of vaccination and boosters.
- Will therapies work towards Omicron? Scientists are working to find out how effectively current therapies for COVID-19 work. Primarily based on the modified genetic make-up of Omicron, some therapies are prone to stay efficient whereas others could also be much less efficient.
We’ve the Instruments to Combat Omicron
Vaccines stay one of the best public well being measure to guard folks from COVID-19, gradual transmission, and scale back the chance of latest variants rising. COVID-19 vaccines are extremely efficient at stopping extreme sickness, hospitalizations, and dying. Scientists are at the moment investigating Omicron, together with how protected absolutely vaccinated folks will likely be towards an infection, hospitalization, and dying. CDC recommends that everybody 5 years and older shield themselves from COVID-19 by getting absolutely vaccinated. CDC recommends that everybody ages 18 years and older ought to get a booster shot a minimum of two months after their preliminary J&J/Janssen vaccine or six months after finishing their main COVID-19 vaccination sequence of Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna.
Masks provide safety towards all variants. CDC continues to suggest sporting a masks in public indoor settings in areas of considerable or excessive neighborhood transmission, no matter vaccination standing. CDC supplies recommendation about masks for individuals who wish to study extra about what kind of masks is correct for them relying on their circumstances.
Exams can let you know in case you are at the moment contaminated with COVID-19. Two kinds of exams are used to check for present an infection: nucleic acid amplification exams (NAATs) and antigen exams. NAAT and antigen exams can solely let you know in case you have a present an infection. People can use the COVID-19 Viral Testing Device to assist decide what sort of check to hunt. Further exams can be wanted to find out in case your an infection was attributable to Omicron. Go to your state, tribal, native, or territorial well being division’s web site to search for the most recent native info on testing.
Self-tests can be utilized at residence or anyplace, are straightforward to make use of, and produce speedy outcomes. In case your self-test has a constructive end result, keep residence or isolate for 10 days, put on a masks in case you have contact with others, and name your healthcare supplier. When you’ve got any questions on your self-test end result, name your healthcare supplier or public well being division.
Till we all know extra concerning the danger of Omicron, it is very important use all instruments accessible to shield your self and others.
What CDC is Doing to Find out about Omicron
CDC scientists are working with companions to assemble knowledge and virus samples that may be studied to reply essential questions concerning the Omicron variant. Scientific experiments have already began. CDC will present updates as quickly as doable.
In america, CDC makes use of genomic surveillance to trace variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 to extra rapidly establish and act upon these findings to finest shield the general public’s well being. CDC established a number of methods to attach and share genomic sequence knowledge being produced by CDC, public well being laboratories, and business diagnostic laboratories inside publicly accessible databases maintained by the Nationwide Heart for Biotechnology Informationexternal icon (NCBI) and the World Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Dataexternal icon (GISAID). If a variant is circulating at 0.1% frequency, there’s a >99% probability that will probably be detected in CDC’s nationwide genomic surveillance.Science Temporary: Omicron (B.1.1.529) Variant
On November 24, 2021, South Africa reported the identification of a brand new SARS-CoV-2 variant, B.1.1.529, to the World Well being Group (WHO). B.1.1.529 was first detected in specimens collected on November 11, 2021 in Botswana and on November 14, 2021 in South Africa.