A ‘large wave’ of Omicron cases and hospitalizations is coming to the US, Biden official tells Axios

Women with mask, hat and gloves holds up rapid test.
A medical worker shows a COVID-19 rapid antigen test.

  • A Biden official warned “everything points to a large wave” of Omicron hospitalizations and deaths.
  • The Omicron variant currently appears to spread more rapidly.
  • “It won’t be as severe, but regrettably, there will be plenty of hospitalizations,” the official said.

The Omicron variant of the coronavirus will bring a “large wave” of COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations to the US soon, a senior Biden administration official told Axios.

“Everything points to a large wave. A large wave is coming,” said the official, who was not named in the report.

“It will be fast. It won’t be as severe, but regrettably, there will be plenty of hospitalizations.”

The Omicron variant appears to spread more rapidly, which means its likely to infect more people.

This means that even if the variant results in milder disease — which early evidence suggests it might — the variant could still bring about more severe infections.

Some European countries said their number of Omicron cases are doubling every two days, and warned of their health systems being overwhelmed. Many countries, such as the UK, are putting in new restrictions and ramping up booster vaccination efforts in response.

Experts are still rushing to figure if the variant is more infectious or more deadly, and if it weakens the effects of existing treatments and vaccines.

The Omicron variant has a high number of mutations, which is why experts are so concerned. Mutations are what can bring about changes in how infectious or deadly the variant is, or how it responds to treatments.

Pfizer announced last week that two doses of its coronavirus vaccine are less effective against the Omicron variant, but that a third dose greatly increases a person’s protection.

The UK has recorded one death of someone with the Omicron variant, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said as he warned that the variant was spreading rapidly.

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