22 US states identify Omicron cases

At least 22 US states have identified cases of the Omicron Covid-19 variant, including some that indicate community transmission, according to the latest update by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
22 US states identify Omicron cases
Image Courtesy: Reuters


In the update issued on Friday, the CDC said that of the 43 cases attributed to the variant, 34 people were fully vaccinated against the virus, reports Xinhua news agency. 
It added that 14 of them were also administered booster shots. Of the identified cases, there was one hospitalisation, while no deaths were reported, according to the CDC.
The most commonly reported symptoms were cough, fatigue, and congestion or runny nose. Case investigations have identified exposures associated with international and domestic travel, large public events, and household transmission.
Implementation of concurrent prevention strategies, including vaccination, masking, increasing ventilation, testing, quarantine, and isolation, are recommended to slow transmission of SARS-CoV-2, including variants such as Omicron, and to protect against severe illness and death from Covid-19, said the CDC.
The first case of Omicron variant was identified in the US on December 1.
Meanwhile, the US has been witnessing a gradual resurgence of the infection with an average of about 120,000 daily new cases this week, which marked an increase of nearly 40 per cent compared to a week before, according to the CDC update.
Currently, Omicron and Delta are the "Variants of Concern" in the US, with the latter remaining the predominant strain, causing over 99 per cent of all the confirmed cases in the country.
The Omicron variant currently accounts for less than 0.1 per cent of variants circulating in the US, according to the CDC. Meanwhile, Covid-19 hospitalisations have also increased about 40 per cent compared to last month.
The country currently averages about 7,500 daily hospital admissions, a 15.9 per cent increase from the prior week, the CDC added.
About 201.2 million people, or 60.6 per cent of the total US population, have been fully vaccinated as of Friday, while 51.7 million booster doses have also been administered, according to CDC data. 
The country's overall caseload and death toll as of Saturday morning stood at 49,833,432 and 796,749. The two tallies are currently the highest in the world.

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