Omicron variant detected in Massachusetts | News
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM)– The COVID-19 variant Omicron has been detected in Massachusetts. The Department of Public Health said they identified it in a female in her 20s from Middlesex County.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health said this woman was fully vaccinated and has experienced mild symptoms. We’re Getting Answers on what this means for Bay State Residents.
“Please let’s not panic about this. Really set yourself up to enjoy the Holidays. I think it’s important to test if you are going to travel,” said Dr. Estevan Garcia, Chief Medical Officer of Cooley Dickinson.
Dr. Garcia, the Chief Medical Officer at Cooley-Dickinson Hospital spoke with Western Mass News after the first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant was identified in Massachusetts on Saturday.
“This is a variant that we felt probably already had been in the United States even before we recognized the first case in the last few days,” said Dr. Garcia.
Western Mass News is getting answers. We wanted to know what the best way is for you can protect yourself against Omicron.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health told Western Mass news in a statement in part:
“Vaccines and boosters are highly effective in preventing severe illness from COVID-19 and there is no evidence available suggesting this is not the case with the omicron variant. Thankfully, this individual, who is vaccinated, is only experiencing mild symptoms at home.”
Doctor Garcia said the high number of omicron mutations present a concern.
“We’re also worried about the number of mutations that this variant has. And something upwards of 50 mutations to this variant,” said Dr. Garcia.
People should still keep their guard up.
“We have to just go back to kind of what we know. Kind of what is tried and true. And that is good hand hygiene. Wearing those masks,” said Dr. Garcia.
The Biden Administration will put travel restrictions in place for air travelers. Starting Monday, you must provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 24 hours of your departing flight. Mask-wearing is also still in play through mid-March.
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