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With the Delta and Omicron coronavirus variants spreading across the country as the new year approaches, health experts are urging Americans to get vaccinated or boosted to protect themselves and others from infection.


USA may be faced Omicron with starting anew year


According to Transportation Security Administration data, airport travel before Christmas has nearly doubled from a year ago, with more than 2 million people screened each day from December 16 to 18. Furthermore, indoor gatherings of friends and family may eventually infect more people who are predisposed to Covid-19 complications.

As the virus spreads, more cities, including New York and Washington, DC, impose restrictions.

Mayor Muriel Bowser has announced that the District's indoor mask mandate will be reinstated beginning at 6 a.m. on Tuesday, December 21 and lasting until January 31.



Responses by states to outbreaks


According to state officials in their respective states, as of Sunday, Omicron had been identified in at least 45 US states, as well as Puerto Rico and Washington, DC. And, with Delta still present, cases are on the rise in some areas.

According to Gov. Kathy Hochul's office, New York, which was among the hardest-hit states at the start of the pandemic, set a new record for single-day Covid-19 cases for the third consecutive day on Sunday.

There is typically a three-week lag between Covid-19 case trends and hospitalizations, but officials are optimistic that the state will be in a better position than last year.

"We are not defenceless, and we have the tools to protect ourselves and our vulnerable loved ones; get vaccinated, get the booster, and wear a mask when indoors or in large crowds. Don't risk it during the winter surge."



Schools and sports are undergoing transformations



USA may be faced Omicron with starting anew year



The tone of the discussion around Covid-19 may change depending on whether hospitalizations increase or decrease in the coming weeks. Nonetheless, some universities and sports leagues are already working to limit potential spread.

Stanford University has announced that it will switch to online instruction for the first two weeks of the upcoming winter quarter, which will begin on January 3.

Harvard University is also moving to remote learning for the first three weeks of January classes, citing "the rapid rise in Covid-19 cases locally and across the country, as well as the growing presence of the highly transmissible Omicron variant" in an open letter.



Sports also affective by Omicron


Several major sports leagues have had to postpone events due to the growing number of Covid-19 cases.


As of Sunday, seven NHL teams were temporarily shut down, and the league and its players' union announced that games requiring cross-border travel between the United States and Canada would be postponed until Christmas.

Five NBA games have been rescheduled because several teams in the league have multiple players who are subject to Covid-19 health and safety protocols. More than a dozen NCAA men's basketball games have been cancelled or rescheduled.

In addition, the NFL postponed three Sunday games and updated its Covid-19 testing procedures, which will no longer require testing of asymptomatic, fully vaccinated players, coaches, and other personnel in close contact with players. Prior to entering team facilities, all individuals will be screened for Covid-19 symptoms.



Moderna: Data suggests that a higher booster dose boosts antibody levels



USA may be faced Omicron with starting anew year



Moderna, a biotechnology company, announced on Monday that preliminary data suggests that its half-dose booster shot increased antibody levels against Omicron when compared to levels seen when a fully vaccinated person did not receive a booster – but a larger-sized dose of the booster increases antibody levels even more.

Moderna's booster is currently administered in 50-microgram doses. According to the company's announcement, a 50-microgram booster dose increased antibody levels 37-fold and a 100-microgram booster dose increased antibody levels 83-fold when compared to levels before the booster.


According to Transportation Security Administration data, airport travel before Christmas has nearly doubled from a year ago, with more than 2 million people screened each day from December 16 to 18. Furthermore, indoor gatherings of friends and family may eventually infect more people who are predisposed to Covid-19 complications.

As the virus spreads, more cities, including New York and Washington, DC, impose restrictions.

Mayor Muriel Bowser has announced that the District's indoor mask mandate will be reinstated beginning at 6 a.m. on Tuesday, December 21 and lasting until January 31.


Source: CNN News








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