The latest COVID-19 variant ommicron has now been identified in five counties in the state of Michigan, officials said Friday.
According to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), a total of six confirmed cases of omicron were discovered in the state as of Friday, Dec. 17.
The following counties in Michigan report the following number of ommicron cases:
Genesee County: 2 ommicron cases
Kent County: 1 ommicron case
Oakland County: 1 ommicron case
Washtenaw County: 1 ommicron case
Wayne County: 1 ommicron case
Prior to Friday, only one known case of omicron was reported in Michigan, in Kent County.
While current ommicron numbers are low in Michigan, it is likely that there are more infections caused by the COVID variant across Michigan and the US that have not been identified. On Tuesday, MDHHS reported that a total of 29 states and US territories have detected ommicron infections so far.
The latest strain of the coronavirus has caused some concern worldwide. Experts say the composition of the omicron variant differs from previous strains of COVID-19, leading to uncertainty about its impact and whether existing vaccines against it would be effective. Health experts say data to date shows that the omicron variant is more transmissible than previous strains, but may cause less serious illness.
Lake: 8 Michigan COVID takeaways: Fourth wave Omicron ‘deeply concerned about direction’
Officials say that while existing COVID-19 vaccines offer protection against the latest variant, a booster shot is critical to increasing that protection. Some drug makers have begun to reinvent existing COVID vaccines to better suit the omicron variant.
Lake: Pfizer shots protect 70% against hospitalization from ommicron
Experts think the ommicron variant will become the dominant COVID-19 variant in the US next year.
Copyright 2021 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit – All rights reserved.