This dominant variant is behind 60% of all COVID-19 cases in the U.S.
The omicron sub-variant BA.2.12.1 makes up close to 60% of all cases in the U.S. but not enough data is available on its severity. Here are the symptoms to look out for
As cases rise, infections caused by the omicron subvariant BA.2.12.1 have become the most dominant, making up close to 60% of all cases, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data.
Driving the news: Current data doesn’t indicate whether this subvariant is more severe than earlier versions, although the levels of transmission are another thing.
- As the country stepped into Memorial Day weekend, new confirmed cases were averaging more than 100,000 for the first time since February, according to The New York Times.
What they’re saying: “It is very easy to catch, it just isn’t infecting the lungs and thus people aren’t dying from it as much but they are getting very sick,” said Dr. Angelique Campen, of Providence St. Joseph Medical Center, per CBS News.
- She added that no one was immune but vaccines and boosters could reduce the severity of infection.
- “This one is really revved up, and it’s probably getting up there with something as transmissible as measles,” said Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College, per The Washington Post.
- “Over the Memorial Day holidays, if you are in settings where you are indoors with large numbers of people without masks … there is a good likelihood you will suffer a breakthrough infection.”
State of play: Variant BA.2 currently makes up more than 34% of cases in the U.S., while BA.1.1.529 makes up 6.1%.
What are symptoms to look out for? According to NBC News, a runny nose is the most common symptom. Others include:
- Sore throat.
- Hoarse voice.
“The changes from BA.1 to BA.2 have been quite subtle — perhaps runny nose and fatigue (are) going up,” said Tim Spector, a professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London.