Local health expert addresses growing concerns over Omicron variant | Connecticut News


(WFSB) – The new COVID variant, omicron, has arrived in the U.S.

It was found in a fully vaccinated patient in California.

We’ve seen multiple variants before this one, and simply put health experts say omicron should be taken seriously, but it is not a cause for panic

When the first case of the omicron variant was confirmed in the U.S, questions like “how severe is this?” “or how transmissible is this variant?”  became front and center.

Dr. Albert Ko is a Professor of Public Health and Medicine, at the Yale School of Public Health.

He said, “those are important questions and a lot depend on answers that hopefully we’ll get in the next couple of weeks.

He says, like all mutations of COVID-19, details become clearer over time

“I think we have to put everything into perspective we know that some variants take off like the delta variant, we know that some variants take off but then die away, so every variant that comes on our plate is not necessarily going to cause the devastation, but we have to be prepared,” he said.

In the meantime, Dr. Ko suggests vaccines, boosters and sticking to the basics, “the ABCs which have been the uses of face masks, testing, getting people diagnosed and getting isolated and so forth.

Dr. Ko says we’ve been in this position before, with the alpha, gamma, and delta variants, but each mutation is not created equal, and neither is the response.

“Hopefully we won’t have to go to the more, heavy handed approaches like the lockdown and the social gathering sizes and so forth and to keep our citizens safe,” said Ko.

Even though it often feels like a game of hurry up and wait, Ko says, with common sense= and some patience, there is light at the end of the tunnel.

“We have to prepare for the worst but hope for the best and that’s kind of our motto in public health and in medicine to do our due diligence,” said Ko.

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