The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed Wednesday the first case of the omicron coronavirus variant in the United States.
The California and San Francisco departments of public health confirmed that a recent COVID-19 case was found in an individual in California caused by the omicron variant, which has the scientific name, B.1.1.529.
- “Genomic sequencing was conducted at the University of California, San Francisco and the sequence was confirmed at CDC as being consistent with the Omicron variant. This will be the first confirmed case of COVID-19 caused by the Omicron variant detected in the United States,” the CDC said.
- The mutations might make the variant more transmissible and give it the ability to evade vaccines and antibodies, experts said.
- “My guess is within the week we’ll hear of the first (omicron) cases in the U.S. and probably soon after that it will reach California and the Bay Area,” he said. “They all arrive eventually, especially the ones that are more transmissible.”
Matt Willis, the Marin County health officer, agreed with the prediction, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
- “I would be surprised if we didn’t see the variant surface in the Bay Area in the next few days,” he said.