A COVID-19 testing facility is marketed at Newark Liberty Worldwide Airport on November 30, 2021 in Newark, New Jersey.
Spencer Platt | Getty Photos
Greater than 20 folks throughout 11 U.S. states have examined constructive for the omicron variant of the virus that causes Covid-19. The sufferers vary in age, vaccination standing and journey historical past, however none of them have developed extreme illness up to now.
Whereas some sufferers had just lately traveled in southern Africa, the place the variant was first detected, others had no journey historical past, indicating that neighborhood transmission is underway within the U.S.
“We completely have neighborhood unfold on this nation,” Dr. Anthony Fauci advised Bloomberg Tv on Friday. “We do not know what number of of them, however there is no doubt there’s neighborhood unfold.”
Scientists and public well being officers are nonetheless accumulating knowledge on whether or not omicron is extra transmissible, higher evades immune safety from vaccines, and/or causes extra extreme illness than different variants.
Those that have examined constructive within the U.S. have all proven delicate to average signs and not one of the sufferers have been hospitalized up to now, in accordance with probably the most present data from state public well being departments. Nonetheless, delicate instances of Covid can progress to extra extreme illness over time.
Lots of the individuals who have examined constructive within the U.S. have been totally vaccinated. Not less than two of the sufferers who have been immunized had not obtained booster pictures but, however one other particular person had obtained their extra dose. And in at the least one case, an individual who had beforehand recovered from Covid examined constructive for omicron.
Whereas the handful of instances within the U.S. do not present any definitive solutions about omicron, the World Well being Group stated Friday that early knowledge suggests the virus is extra contagious. And South African scientists revealed a examine, which has not but been peer reviewed, that discovered omicron carries the next danger of reinfecting individuals who beforehand caught Covid than previous variants.
Though among the individuals who examined constructive for omicron have been totally vaccinated, the truth that they’ve developed delicate signs means that the pictures are nonetheless offering safety towards extreme illness from the variant, U.S. well being officers stated. Fauci stated Friday throughout a White Home Covid briefing that lab research point out booster pictures enhance antibody safety towards a spread of variants.
“There’s each purpose to imagine that in case you get vaccinated and boosted that you’d have at the least a point of cross-protection,” Fauci stated, “very probably towards extreme illness, even towards the omicron variant.”
California confirmed the primary U.S. case of omicron Wednesday in an individual who just lately returned from South Africa to the San Francisco space. The particular person was between 18 and 49 years of age, totally vaccinated and was not eligible for his or her booster shot but, in accordance with Gov. Gavin Newsom. The particular person confirmed delicate signs and is anticipated to make a full restoration, Newsom stated Wednesday.
“The proof that a person with omicron recognized by sequencing really has delicate signs, is bettering, I believe is a sworn statement to the significance of the vaccinations,” stated Dr. Mark Ghaly, California’s Well being and Human Companies secretary.
California confirmed a second omicron case Thursday within the Los Angeles space. That grownup was additionally totally vaccinated and had just lately returned from South Africa by way of London, in accordance with town well being division. The particular person’s signs are bettering with out medical care, officers stated.
“This an infection is most definitely travel-related,” the Los Angeles County public well being division stated. The division, citing privateness issues, wouldn’t disclose the particular person’s age or booster standing when requested by CNBC on Friday.
In Minnesota on Thursday, public well being officers confirmed an omicron case in an grownup male who was totally vaccinated and had just lately returned from an anime conference on the Javits Heart in New York Metropolis. His signs have been delicate and have since resolved, in accordance with the state well being division.
The Minnesota resident had obtained a booster shot previous to attending the conference in New York, Minnesota public well being spokesman Doug Schultz advised CNBC on Friday.
On Thursday morning, Colorado confirmed a case of omicron in a totally vaccinated grownup lady who had not obtained a booster shot. The lady, like the primary case in California, had a current journey historical past to southern Africa, the place the variant was first detected. She is experiencing minor signs and is recovering at dwelling, in accordance with Colorado’s well being division.
Gov. Jared Polis advised residents throughout a press convention Thursday that well being officers imagine neighborhood unfold is low in Colorado in the mean time. Well being officers haven’t but detected omicron by wastewater evaluation, and so they haven’t detected a second case by genetic sequencing but.
“So if it was prevalent, we’d know — it does not imply it is nonexistent,” Polis stated.
Hawaii confirmed a case in Oahu on Thursday in an individual who was beforehand contaminated with Covid, was by no means vaccinated and had no journey historical past, in accordance with the state well being division. The particular person is displaying average signs, it stated.
“This can be a case of neighborhood unfold,” the division stated in a press launch.
Nebraska confirmed six omicron instances Friday, in a transmission chain that seems to have began with an individual who just lately traveled to Nigeria. The opposite 5 folks have been probably uncovered by family contact with the one who had traveled to Africa, in accordance with the state well being division. Solely one of many six folks was vaccinated, however none of them have required hospitalization.
Maryland on Friday confirmed three folks from the Baltimore metro space examined constructive for omicron. Two of the individuals are from the identical family, a vaccinated one who had just lately traveled to South Africa and a detailed contact of that one who was unvaccinated. The third case was in a vaccinated one who had no identified current journey historical past, in accordance with state officers.
“Not one of the three people are hospitalized,” Gov. Larry Hogan stated in a press launch.
A person in his 30s from northwest Philadelphia has examined constructive for omicron, metropolis officers confirmed on Friday. Philadelphia’s well being division stated it’s working to get extra data on the case.
A St. Louis resident with current home journey historical past is presumed constructive for omicron, the Missouri state well being division stated Friday. The pattern was sequenced by a industrial lab and is awaiting affirmation by the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention.
The Missouri state well being division didn’t present data on the person’s age, vaccination historical past or signs. CNBC has reached out to state well being authorities out for extra data.
The New Jersey Division of Well being has confirmed a case of omicron in a traveler from Georgia who was just lately in South Africa. The grownup lady, who’s totally vaccinated, skilled average signs and is now recovering after receiving care in an emergency division in northern New Jersey, in accordance with state well being officers.
New York recognized 5 instances of the omicron variant Thursday night, however the particulars are sparse.
A 67-year-old lady in Suffolk County examined constructive after current journey to South Africa, in accordance with Gov. Kathy Hochul. The affected person had some vaccination historical past, nevertheless it’s not clear if she was totally immunized or had obtained a booster. The lady has proven delicate signs, together with a headache and cough.
Two folks additionally examined constructive within the New York Metropolis borough of Queens, and one other particular person examined constructive in Brooklyn, however their vaccination histories have been unknown as of Thursday night. One other traveler additionally reportedly examined constructive within the metropolis, although the governor did not present any extra data.
CNBC has reached out to New York Metropolis’s well being division requesting additional particulars on the vaccination standing and signs of the individuals who examined constructive for omicron.
New York Metropolis Well being Commissioner Dave Chokshi advised the general public Thursday that the instances point out there may be neighborhood unfold within the state.
“This isn’t simply people who find themselves touring to southern Africa or to different components of the world the place omicron has already been recognized,” Chokshi stated.
Utah confirmed its first case of the omicron variant, public well being officers confirmed Friday.
Officers stated the person who examined constructive was an older grownup who just lately returned dwelling to Utah after touring to South Africa.
The particular person is totally vaccinated and confirmed solely delicate signs. They obtained monoclonal antibody therapy.