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Omicron COVID variant likely already in Colorado

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - While Omicron, the latest COVID variant of concern, has yet to be identified in the United States, health officials believe if the variant isn't already in Colorado, it will be soon.

“If we follow what has happened with previous variants of COVID, it appears to be a matter of time before it is spread," said Dr. Ruth Johnson, Medical Director for the El Paso County Health Department. "Part of that is due to the fact that we know that there are a couple of days in which we are already percolating and incubating the virus before it is detectable. And then before we may even have symptoms, we can be spreading it for a couple of days. So it would be a natural implication that it's already present in the United States and/or Colorado."

"I would say within the next week, maybe two weeks, I think we'll have an announcement that we've identified the first case," said Dr. Michelle Barron, Senior Medical Director of Infection Prevention at UCHealth.

Omicron has been identified in over a dozen countries so far, and was first reported to the World Health Organization from South Africa on November 24. At this point, the WHO says it's not clear if Omicron is more transmissible than other COVID-19 variants. However, preliminary evidence suggests there may be an increased risk of reinfection with Omicron -- people who have previously had COVID-19 could become reinfected more easily with Omicron.

"South Africa has already been through multiple waves of COVID, so Omicron again tells us that potentially natural immunity is maybe not as effective," said Dr. Barron.

Though Omicron could already be in Colorado, we likely won't know for sure for another week. That's because the testing needed to confirm what type of variant someone has after getting a COVID test takes several days.

"The PCR testing is coming back within 24 to 48 hours," said Dr. Johnson "But genomic sequencing can take seven to ten days just because of the whole process and the science of it. So let's say we had one sample that popped today. It would be seven to ten days, potentially before that might be sequenced and confirmed."

In a press conference Monday, President Joe Biden stressed that this new variant is a "cause for concern, not a cause for panic."

"We'll fight this variant with scientific and knowledgeable actions and speed, not chaos and confusion," said President Biden. "We have more tools today to fight the variant than we ever had before, from vaccines to boosters to vaccines for children."

The El Paso County Health Department emphasizes the importance of getting vaccinated and says as long as there are large populations of unvaccinated people, the virus will continue to mutate and we will see more variants, some of which may resist vaccination.

"I think any time that the virus has an opportunity to multiply unmitigated, and that's just not from person to person in social spread, but also within those individuals where they have an unmitigated chance to create more copies of itself, there is more opportunity for mutation," said Dr. Johnson.

UCHealth also reminds everyone there's a different variant already wreaking havoc on Colorado hospital systems.

"Delta is still out there and causing infections and hospitalizing patients, and the vaccines work for that, for sure,” said Dr. Barron.

If you need a vaccine, booster, or COVID-19 test, you can find information at the following links:

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Mallory Anderson



    remove @ and replace with a
    WHO has far better info regarding this variant than the CDC has posted. The CDC ‘s info almost seems deliberate in lacking to mention that this variant appears to be vaccine resistant, and higher transmissibility. I’m sure this is just a oversight by the CDC and their stellar performance they have shown so far.

      “CDC also recommends that everyone 5 years and older protect themselves from COVID-19 by getting fully vaccinated”
      Did the CDC read the info regarding this variant at all?
      Info posted by WHO
      A SARS-CoV-2 VOC is a SARS-CoV-2 variant that meets the definition of a VOI (see above) and, through a comparative @ssessment, has been demonstrated to be @ssociated with one or more of the following changes at a degree of global public health significance:
      -increase in transmissibility or detrimental change in COVID-19 epidemiology; OR
      -increase in virulence or change in clinical disease presentation; OR
      -decrease in effectiveness of public health and social measures or available diagnostics, vaccines, therapeutics

      1. Follow the money. The US Government has a contract and joint pattern with Moderna to produce these “vaccines” that don’t prevent transmission or prevent you from catching the virus. They won’t stop pushing them until the people say enough is enough, the compliance is only prolonging this nightmare. They will keep moving the goalpost until people stop playing the game.

        1. Fauchi is a heavy investor in the Moderna corp. He is getting a piece of every shot and booster. Why not recommend boosters for everyone? Cha-ching let Fauci’s bank account ring.

          1. Why is Fauci still being used as an advisor? Yes, he does have unique insight into this virus as he @ssisted in helping create this virus and its gain of function from bat to human. But at what point will our nation also hold him accountable for his actions for this choice and stop looking to him as the savior, not the mad scientist. Law Enforcement charges other “Angels of Death” when they create problems just so they can become the savior, when will this occur for Fauci?

      2. “Vaccine resistant” does not translate to the vaccine being useless. It simply means the vaccine may be less effective with this variant than with the others.
        Note that people relying solely on “natural immunity” are typically only resistant to the one strain with which they were previously infected, while the current vaccines provide immunity to a whole spectrum of similar viruses. It’s the degree of difference between this variant and the others that raises the question of how effective the immunity actually is.

        1. I equate this to terminology I know from my previous career that also used similar verbiage. Bulletproof versus bullet resistant.
          If you are receiving incoming rounds, what would you rather have protecting you, something bulletproof or bullet resistant?
          Since our Government is forcing this mandate (I know it is being legally challenged, and hope for the mandate to be repealed), what would you rather have protecting you, something that stops the bullet, or something that MAY stop the bullet? If it is the latter than it is just as effective as “Natural Immunity”.

  2. I’m still not convinced this virus is that bad. Where are all the deaths? I here about them in the news, but I haven’t seen in my own personal life. My brother tested positive, but no symptoms. Are the tests even working? There have been people testing positive in my workplace, but no real sickness or death. Are these numbers just made up or could it be people who were already sick, old, or about to die anyway that are pumping the numbers to higher than normal levels.

    1. No such thing as an asymptomatic case. Research the inventor of the PCR test and see what he has to say about it. They tell us to follow the science, after all.

      1. The PCR test will no longer be used after 12/31/21, due to the misuse of the test and the unreliability of results.Too many false positives. The inventor of this test states so himself.

      2. the inventor of the PCR test has repeatedly publicized that it is not being used in the manner it was designed to-thus giving an abundance pf false positives. The CDC will no longer use the PCR test after 12/31/21.FACT.

  3. Another variant… big woop. South Africa already reporting symptoms are mild. This virus continues to be weaponized for never-ending jabs and infringement on basic freedoms. If you believe the Powers that Be, it’s time to awaken from your woke.

  4. They forgot to mention that…
    …the CEO of Moderna doesn’t think the vaccine is very effective against Omicron
    …the doctors in South Africa who have been dealing with Omicron describe the symptoms and “very mild.”
    Sooo…. who cares?

  5. I just have this to say. In my lifetime thus far I have been through many many of the SARS/Corona stuff and infectious viruses. And at no time in the past were these “variants” named like we have happening now. DoRight is correct…these “variants” are being used as weapons of fear to keep the m@ss psychosis going for more money in their pockets. I’m not going to name who “their” are…we all know…all of us…no matter what side which choose or are affiliated with…mild symptoms to say the least with this omicron. By the way who makes up these names and what is an omicron…oh that’s right…the 15th letter of the Greek alphabet…so scary! Get over it and start enjoying life again and stop listening to these “fauci phonies” who claim to be experts…like Check!

  6. Of course the reaction of people to the Omicron variant will be mild–the virus cannot live without a ‘host’–and if the host dies, so does the virus, UNLESS it is p@ssed on to others (which would explain why the Omicron variant would be more ‘contagious.’) Amazing how little critical thinking there is loose in the “scientific” and “medical” and “pharmaceutical” world today, isn’t it?

  7. Why come out of the gates with we have a new variant & it spreads faster & it’s deadlier? Kennedy shows how this is Fraudci’s MO. It deflects & distracts while he buys time to create more misdirection to just keep pushing toxic programs. Just like he will claim there are no studies because he won’t allow them, or if there are studies it’s under his or his minions thumb to present the picture he wants.

  8. “…says as long as there are large populations of unvaccinated people, the virus will continue to mutate and we will see more variants, some of which may resist vaccination.”
    There is NO scientific proof that variant only develop in non vaccinated people. This is a HUGE lie just to try to boost vaccinations. Did you know Pfizer reported a 26.5Billion dollar PROFIT this year. Hmmm. And Biden wants to go after oil companies for possible price gouging.
    The “O” variant has been reported to be very mild. Most hard hit report muscle aches and fatigue for 24hrs. Ohh man lets all be worried. This is becoming such a joke it is not funny anymore. Now they want to sell you a vaccine just for the “O” variant that is very mild. Umm someone needs to look at Pfizer, Moderna and J&J they may be out dumping these variant after knowing how much money the first covid has made them. Record profits!

    1. It’s a statistic, like everything else in our world of probabilities. Unvaccinated people are so much more likely (5 times) to become infected, and to have immunity of only the strain with which they were infected, that they provide a much more receptive host than a vaccinated person. So the odds are MUCH BETTER for the unvaccinated person to host a successful mutation than a vaccinated one, because it’s more likely that a mutation that happens in a vaccinated person will be halted by the vaccine’s superior efficacy.

      1. Per Pfizer, CDC and other vaccine manufacturers. The Vaccine does not cover the whole spectrum of the COVID-19 virus. The vaccine is intended to lessen the symptoms of the virus if infected and not prevent the infection itself.
        Basic virology indicates that when recovered from and infection the body produces the whole spectrum of antibodies to cover the infection form the virus. That is the only way the body gets rid of the infection.
        This is why people who have received the vaccine still get and transmit COVID-19. Based on data received during vaccine trials many people who get the vaccine get COVID-19 without knowing it due to the lack of or mild symptoms. The vaccine gives the body 70% of the antibodies needed to fight the infection and the rest are derived from the body producing them while combating the infection.
        Per the CDC it is most likely that all variants are developed in people with pre-existing conditions or other medical conditions. Variants can also come from vaccinated people with compromised immune systems, fighting other viruses concurrently, and/or other serious medical conditions. Healthy individuals do not produce variants as their immune system does not allow the virus the time to mutate before being eradicated.
        But hey…. why listen to the science? I guess that means nothing now and we should all rely upon what we are told.

      2. Nice Check…always coming at us with YOUR truths. We have had this discussion with you and many others. Expose the lies…reveal the truth is my mantra. And your time and your truths are slowly but surely coming to a crashing end!

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