January 16, 2022

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Scientists Are Racing to Gauge the Risk of Omicron

Scientists Are Racing to Gauge the Threat of Omicron

The excellent news, specialists mentioned, is that America has sources at its disposal, if it chooses to make use of them. Assessments nonetheless work for Omicron. Vaccines are actually extensively out there and will blunt the burden of extreme illness. Antiviral capsules, that are anticipated to be efficient towards Omicron, may quickly be out there, though provides will probably be very restricted at first.

“There are extra instruments in our toolbox now than there have been through the vacation season final 12 months,” Dr. Majumder mentioned.

People who find themselves not but vaccinated ought to get vaccinated, specialists mentioned, and those that are eligible for boosters ought to get them. And masking, testing and taking precautions when gathering with others indoors — the identical behaviors that specialists have lengthy been recommending — may assist sluggish the unfold.

However past these particular person behaviors, officers nonetheless must do extra, specialists mentioned.

The Biden administration, for example, has centered closely on selling vaccination and boosters, which stay essential public well being instruments. However within the face of a foe like Omicron, they don’t seem to be sufficient, specialists warned.

“The best way we’re seeing it unfold in different places, the best way we’re beginning to see it take maintain right here, implies {that a} vaccination-only technique goes to be very fragile,” Dr. Salomon mentioned.

Consultants referred to as on officers to enhance entry to testing, distribute high-quality masks, promote improved air flow and problem clearer pointers about what actions it’s protected to have interaction in and in what circumstances.

Native governments, faculties and employers additionally want to start planning — and making these plans public — about what they are going to do within the occasion of huge outbreaks or if instances or hospitalizations rise to a sure degree, they famous.

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