Omicron variant now in North America, Canadian officials say

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Canadian officials announced on Sunday that the Omicron version of COVID-19 has reached North America, with two cases in the province of Ontario.

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A joint statement by Ontario’s top health officials Christine Elliott and Kieran Moore said two people living in Nigeria recently tested positive for the variant.

Contact tracing was being done to determine whether other people in the country may have tested positive.


Health officials said their strategy is to prevent as many omicron cases from entering Canada.

“We continue to urge the federal government to take necessary steps to mandate arrival point testing for all passengers, regardless of where they are coming from, to protect against the spread of this new variant,” the pair said.

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According to the statement, Ontario has focused on rapid COVID-19 testing on passengers traveling to South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe.

On Saturday, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told that “Weekend Today” That edition on Saturday may already be in the United States.

“We haven’t detected it yet, but when you have a virus that’s showing this degree of communicability and you already have travel-related cases they’ve been noted in Israel and Belgium and other places — When you have a virus like this, it’s going to go all over the place, almost forever,” he said.

Fauci explained to Granthshala News why the variant has prompted global caution: Its apparent mutation indicates that it may be highly transmissible and may protect against the body’s immune response as well as some of the protection provided by pandemic vaccines. might be able to escape.

Fauci said, “You don’t want to scare the American public, but when something happens that you need to take seriously, you take it seriously and you do whatever you can against it.” ”

The spread of the variant prompted Israel on Saturday to close its borders to travelers, with few exceptions.

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