New York announced three other omicron coronavirus variants on Saturday, bringing the number of state cases related to the new variant to eight.
State Health Commissioner Mary Bassett said in a press release: “The omicron variant is here, and as expected, we have seen the beginning of community transmission.”
The number of states where the variant has been discovered is also increasing. Massachusetts, Connecticut and Washington announced their first cases on Saturday. This is the second day after New Jersey, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Maryland reported their first confirmed cases. Missouri reported its first presumptive case on Friday.
The variant has also been found in Nebraska, Minnesota, California, Hawaii, Colorado and Utah.
In New York, seven of these cases occurred in New York City, which was once the epicenter of the global pandemic, and another occurred in Suffolk County.
The arrival of omicron comes at a time when hospitals across the state continue to be under pressure amid the surge in coronavirus cases, most of which can be traced back to the delta variant and staff shortages.
In the past 30 days, the number of people testing positive every day across the state has doubled.
In recent days, Governor Kathy Hochul has authorized the Ministry of Health to restrict non-essential, non-emergency procedures in hospitals that are about to run out of beds, and deploy the National Guard to alleviate medical staff in facilities that deal with staffing problems and a surge in cases.
According to WROC, 15 members of the National Guard arrived at Monroe Community Hospital in Rochester on Saturday. Governor Brian Benjamin (Brian Benjamin) said on Wednesday that the state will send 13 National Guards to Western New York County, and County Governor Adam Bello has declared a state of emergency in the county.
Hochul said that so far, the omicron case in New York does not appear to be connected. One of the known cases involved a man from Minnesota who was one of 50,000 people who attended a three-day animation festival in New York City in November. Authorities have urged anyone attending the meeting to be tested for COVID-19 and wear masks in public.
There are still many unknowns about omicron, including whether it is more infectious as some health authorities suspect, whether it can prevent vaccination, and whether it makes people sick like the original strain.
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont reported the state’s first confirmed case on Saturday, saying it may also be related to the New York City Animation Conference. The case involved a man in his 60s who was vaccinated in the Hartford area and his family attended the meeting. Lamont’s office said that the family member who had also been vaccinated developed symptoms and the symptoms have since resolved.
Washington State health officials said three cases of omicron variants were confirmed in Washington State on Saturday-one in Thurston, Pierce and King counties. They pointed out that the investigation is still too early, and the travel history of the patient, including two men and a woman, between the ages of 20 and 39, is not yet known.
The Department of Public Health announced on Saturday that a Massachusetts woman in her 20s had travelled abroad. This is the first known case of a variant found in her state. The unidentified woman is a resident of Middlesex County. She was vaccinated and has mild symptoms.
A woman who recently traveled from South Africa sought treatment for moderate symptoms in the emergency room and became the first confirmed case in New Jersey and Georgia. Health officials in the two states said that after arriving in New Jersey from South Africa, the vaccinated Georgia resident stayed in her hometown for two days.
The first three cases of omicron variants in Maryland were found in the Baltimore metropolitan area and included two people from the same family, authorities said. One of the two is a vaccinated person who recently traveled to South Africa. The third case was found in a vaccinated person who had no recent travel history and has nothing to do with it.
In Pennsylvania, a man in his 30s from Philadelphia became the state’s first case. The Philadelphia Department of Public Health did not immediately state whether the man had been vaccinated against COVID-19 or whether he had traveled.
According to the state’s health officials, the first assumed case in Missouri involved a person who had recently travelled within the United States, but they did not provide more detailed information about the St. Louis resident. The St. Louis Department of Health said it is awaiting confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On Friday, the number of cases in California, Nebraska and Colorado increased.
Public health officials said the five cases in Northern California were related to a wedding in Wisconsin at the end of last month. According to the Alameda County Public Health Department, one of them had just returned from an international trip.
Health officials confirmed six new cases in southeastern Nebraska. State health officials stated that the state’s first case may have originated from one of six people who had recently travelled to Nigeria and returned on November 23.
Officials said on Friday that Colorado discovered its second case of the omicron variant just one day after the state’s first confirmed case.
“We know that the omicron variant is coming, and we hope to see more cases. But let me be clear: we are not defenseless,” Hochul said. “We have the tools to help prevent the spread of this deadly virus: get vaccinations, get boosters and wear masks.”
At the same time, officials said Saturday night that 10 people on a Norwegian cruise ship approaching New Orleans had tested positive for COVID-19. The Louisiana Health Agency stated that the Norwegian Breakthrough left the city on November 28 and returned this weekend after staying in Belize, Honduras and Mexico in recent days. There are more than 3,200 people on board. Officials did not immediately state whether the passengers had been tested for the virus variant.