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No cases of COVID-19 omicron variant identified in US yet, CDC says


No cases of COVID-19 omicron variant identified in US yet, CDC says after Fauci said ‘he wouldn’t be surprised’ if it was there

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said no cases of the new ommicron strain of COVID-19 had been identified in the country as of Friday night.

The agency said it was following details about the new variant, which was first reported in South Africa and is feared to be more contagious than previous variants. The CDC classified ommicron as a “variety of concern.”

“We are grateful to the South African government and its scientists who have communicated openly with the global scientific community and continued to share information about this variant with the United States Department of Health and Human Services and CDC,” the CDC said in a statement.

“We are working with other US and global public health and industry partners to learn more about this variant as we continue to follow the path.”

The agency added that ommicron “would be identified soon” if it appears in the US, as the virus has surfaced in several European countries, Israel, Hong Kong and Australia.

The statement from the CDC comes as Dr. Anthony Fauci, America’s top health expert, said he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Omicron was already in the country after a flight from Johannesburg, South Africa, that landed at Newark airport Saturday morning.

Cases of Omicron have already been picked up in South Africa, Botswana, Hong Kong, Israel and Belgium. It is not yet known whether the variant arrived in the Netherlands yesterday, but the Dutch authorities are monitoring passenger tests. There are also suspicions of individual cases in Germany, the Czech Republic and Australia



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