Omicron variant may bring second-largest U.S. COVID wave: The Guardian

(Xinhua) 08:56, July 12, 2022

LONDON, July 11 (Xinhua) -- The BA.5 version of COVID-19 has become the majority variant of the virus in America in a matter of weeks, in a troubling development that comes amid what may already be America's second-largest wave of the pandemic, British newspaper The Guardian has reported.

It also comes at a time when much of the U.S. has relaxed nearly all COVID restrictions in public and life has largely returned to normal, said the recently-issued report.

"COVID-19 is very clearly not over. We're seeing dramatic increases in the number of cases and hospitalizations in many places throughout the United States," the report cited Jason Salemi, an associate professor of epidemiology at the University of South Florida's College of Public Health, as saying.

As BA.5, one of the Omicron sub-variants, begins buffeting the U.S., "we're headed in a bad direction", Salemi said. "We've seen it coming for a while ... We've seen it go pretty unabated."

More than one in three Americans live in a county at medium risk from COVID, and one in five are at high risk, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That's the highest proportion of the country facing risks since February, Salemi said. 

(Web editor: Peng Yukai, Liang Jun)


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