WH Coronavirus Response Coordinator Fails to Mention 1st Case of Omicron Is Fully Vaccinated

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 08: Registered Nurse Ririn Widiashi administers the Pfizer vacc
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Jeff Zients, the White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator, released a statement on the first case of the Omicron variant of the Chinese coronavirus in the United States but, notably, excluded the fact that the case had been identified in a fully vaccinated individual in California.

“Today, the CDC has confirmed the first case of the Omicron variant detected in the United States. As the President said last Friday, it was only a matter of time before the first case of Omicron was detected in the U.S.,” Zients said in a statement, expressing the administration’s belief that vaccines will provide “some” level protection against severe illness.

He continued, urging people to get vaccinated and to continue to wear masks:

As such, we urge all adults to get their booster shots and to get themselves and their kids vaccinated, if they haven’t already. The President will have more to say about our strategy for fighting COVID this winter tomorrow, but for now, we know that: This new variant is cause for continued vigilance, not panic.

“We will remain steadfast in our fight against this virus. And we will continue to be guided by the science and proven public health measures to keep people safe,” he added.

Notably, Zients excluded the fact that the first U.S. case of the variant popped up in California.

Dr. Anthony Fauci detailed the announcement on Wednesday in the White House briefing room. The infected individual, who is fully vaccinated, had recently returned from South Africa and tested positive for the variant on November 29. That individual has reportedly experienced mild symptoms. Notably, the doctor who identified the new variant said the symptoms appear to be “extremely mild.”

As a result of the news of the variant, the U.S. temporarily suspended travel from South Africa, as well as several other African nations.

On Thursday, President Biden is expected to reveal the steps his administration will take moving forward as part of what has been described as a “winter strategy” to combat the coronavirus. One of the more controversial proposals on the table includes forcing international travelers to self-quarantine for seven days, regardless of vaccination status or a negative coronavirus test.


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