On Wednesday, Dr. Anthony Fauci proclaimed that the first confirmed case of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 has surfaced in the United States. Fauci made this declaration from the White House press briefing room, noting that the case had been discovered in California from an individual who had recently returned from a trip to South Africa.
The individual in question had returned from South Africa on November 22, and they tested positive for the Omicron variant on November 29. In addition, they have also been fully vaccinated, and they reported only mild symptoms. Moreover, no one that had been in close contact with the individual has tested positive for COVID, according to Fauci.
In addition, Fauci also remarked that various genomic sequencing tests had been conducted by the University of California San Francisco, and these results were subsequently confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
When discussing the affected individual, Fauci continued to push vaccinations for all Americans, including for children, given the recent FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine for children. In addition, Fauci also instructed Americans to begin signing up for booster shots if they received an MRNA vaccine from Pfizer or Moderna over six months ago.
For now, the case in California is the only Omicron case suspected in the United States, according to the CDC.
Recently, the Biden administration has shut down travel from not only South Arica, but several other nations from Africa after South African scientists revealed their discovery of the new variant. The South African government has subsequently assailed the Biden administration’s harsh response, pointing out that the variant had not originated from South Africa; on the contrary, it was first identified in South Africa.
Fauci noted that the affected individual had engaged in appropriate behavior by testing for COVID as soon as they began experiencing symptoms.