NEWS

GALEO
Alba L. Villarreal
Director of Communications
avillarreal@galeo.org

The Omicron Variant

By Jimena Somilleda 

Over the course of the past month, the World Health Organization has deemed the Omicron Variant of COVID-19, a “variant of concern.” The Omicron Variant was first detected after extensive research campaigns in South Africa (Jacobs 2021). Much is still unknown about this new variant, however, many professionals and world leaders have come out and made public statements about plans for a potential surge in Omicron Varient Cases.

The Omicron Variant was first identified in Botswana, South Africa, and has since prompted concern for many health professionals around the world. Since its discovery, the World Health Organization has labeled the Omicron Variant as a variant of concern (Jacobs 2021). The Omicron Variant has been reported to have very similar symptoms to the Delta and Alpha variant of COVID-19 (CDC 2021). In addition, to the discovery of this variant, many world leaders are preparing to create plans for a potential lockdown to prevent the potential extremes of the Omicron variant.

This variant is very new and much about the severity of this variant is still unknown. As of now, there are no reported cases of the Omicron Variant of COVID-19 in the United States, but many cities around the country are preparing for what this variant may bring. Currently, President Biden does not anticipate any sort of lockdown protocol in response to the Omicron Variant. However, in order to prevent this variant from making its way to the U.S., Biden has implemented a travel ban from South Africa (Sangal 2021). In response to the severity of the Omicron variant, New York has reinstated and is reinforcing its indoor mask mandate and vaccination efforts (Sangal 2021).

The CDC has advised the general public to wear a mask indoors and in the setting of big groups of people. Additionally, it is advised to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and obtain a booster dose of the vaccine for adults over 18 years old (CDC 2021).

Works Cited

Jacobs, Andrew. What We Know about the New Covid Variant, Omicron – the …

https://www.nytimes.com/article/omicron-coronavirus-variant.html.

Macaya, Melissa, et al. “November 29, 2021 Omicron Covid-19 Variant News.” CNN, Cable News Network, 30 Nov. 2021,

https://www.cnn.com/world/live-news/covid-variant-omicron-11-29-21/index.html.

“Update on Omicron.” World Health Organization, World Health Organization, https://www.who.int/news/item/28-11-2021-update-on-omicron.

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