Concord, California – The California Department of Public Health stated that it is aware of the new Omicron Covid-19 variation, but that no cases have been reported in the state.
“We continue to monitor the situation carefully,” the department officials stated.
President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser and head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said on Friday that there is “no indication” that Omicron is now in the United States. Curative, a COVID-19 test provider in over 40 states, said that while it can sequence COVID-19 tests for research purposes, no samples sequenced by Curative have been found to contain the Omicron variation.
Cases of the variation have been recorded in Belgium, Botswana, Hong Kong, and Israel, in addition to South Africa.
World Health Organization leaders on Friday classified the Omicron COVID-19 variant as a “variant of concern.”
Initial evidence “suggests an increased risk of reinfection with this variant,” according to a WHO advisory group, and the number of COVID-19 cases “appears to be increasing in practically all provinces in South Africa.”
Due to concerns about this new variant, numerous countries, including the United States, have imposed restrictions on travelers from Southern Africa.