ADPH: Stay vigilant as new Omicron variant cases rise
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Cases of COVID-19 are once again on the rise across the United States, with a new Omicron subvariant labeled BA.5 responsible for nearly 65 percent of those cases according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Alabama Department of Public Health.
ADPH and CDC officials feel the percentage may actually be higher, as this number does not account for home tests, which are not reported.
Preliminary data suggests that the BA.5 subvariant is more infectious than previous subvariants. It also appears to cause milder sickness, although hospital numbers and deaths due to COVID-19 have increased over the last several weeks.
People who have the BA.5 subvariant are experiencing many of the cold and flu-like symptoms commonly associated with COVID-19, including:
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
- Night sweats
- Lingering cough
Some patients are also reporting new loss of taste and smell.
The Alabama Department of Public Health said during this surge monitor COVID-19 levels in your community and continue practicing prevention strategies including wearing a well-fitting mask and social distancing.
ADPH doctors said vaccination remains the best way to protect against severe illness, hospitalization and death. Visit alabamaunites.com to locate a vaccination site near you.
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