Omicron: Newest COVID variant causing concern and unanswered questions

SALISBURY, Md.- Omicron, it’s the newest coronavirus variant being talked about. It was first detected in South Africa, but experts say it’s spreading, leading to travel restrictions and raising concerns.

“So, yea there’s a couple of things we have to be worried about with any of the variants,” Dr. Chris Snyder, a doctor at TidalHealth Peninsula Regional, said.

A doctor at TidalHealth Peninsula Regional said officials are saying one of the main areas of concern:

“is called immune escape potential and that’s ability to kind of camo itself from our immune response that’s been initiated by the vaccine or even some by natural immunity,” Dr. Snyder said.

And, the variant’s ability to be transmitted between humans is always a question.

“The mutations itself isn’t the concern, the concern is how the mutation can effect the virus and resistance and the severity of the illness,” Sajjad Haque, a third year pharmacy student at the University of Maryland, said.

Now, when it comes to vaccines:

“Currently, there is no data on whether this vaccine will work or not but safe practices, stay vaccinated because if you’re not then that question of whether its going to work or not is irrelevant,” Haque said.

But in the meantime, health officials said continue to practice good health and safety precautions.

“If you’re worried about the variants and this disease in general, the hand washing technique has got to improve our stats have got to improve, wearing masks in public always help, especially if you’re sick, and staying home if you’re sick,” Haque said.

And, that includes gathering with friends and family for the holidays.

“Whosoever coming to visit, if they’ve taken the necessary steps, tested vaccinations, you know good habits then you should be confident that you can still enjoy the Christmas season,” Haque said.

 

Categories: Coronavirus, Local News, Maryland