(Washington, DC) -- The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) are urging for vaccinations as the Omicron variant of COVID-19 is rapidly spreading across the United States.
The CDC says the Omicron variant of COVID-19 is becoming exponentially prevalent in the United States and countries across the globe. They say this because of Omicron's increased transmissibility, and the ability to evade immunity from both past infections and vaccinations. You can learn more about those findings here.
Early studies have shown that infection may be less severe than prior variants of COVID-19, however, reliable data on clinical severity is limited at best. The CDC says a major concern comes from the number of hospitalizations this variant is creating, rather than the severity of them. This is because of the heightened transmissibility of the Omicron variant forcing more people into hospitals and ICU's. They also say the stresses of the Delta variant and other respiratory illnesses are also hard to ignore, and have been steadily increasing as well. You can find more information about these concerns here.
The CDC recommends many of the same tools which have been widely regarded as successful against the previous variants...
In short, vaccinations are highly effective against preventing severe illness, hospitalizations and death. Although Omicron may be subverting some of the effectiveness of the vaccine, studies are being conducted to see the level of immunity the current vaccinations have the most recent COVID variant. You can learn more about vaccines here.
The CDC also recommends masking, as they reduce the level of spread regardless of vaccination status. You can find more information about masking here.
The CDC also recommends regular testing for COVID-19. For more information about testing, you can click here.