Omikron in the USA: Biden wants to present Corona strategy

Status: 02.12.2021 10:06 a.m.

The USA also has its first confirmed case of the new Omikron corona variant in the state of California. In view of the tense situation in the country, President Biden now wants to present his winter strategy against the pandemic.

By Julia Kastein, ARD Studio Washington

“It was only a matter of time,” said US top virologist Anthony Fauci, announcing the news of the first confirmed Omikron case in the USA. The new virus variant was found in a person in California. She had returned to San Francisco from South Africa on November 22 and tested positive on Monday, Fauci said.

Julia Kastein
ARD-Studio Washington

The person who is between 18 and 49 years old and whose gender has not been disclosed is in self-isolation. And all close contact persons have so far tested negative. And: “The person is vaccinated, has only mild symptoms and is on the mend,” said Fauci.

US government expresses concern

Even if it was only a matter of time, the US government is concerned. Because the number of infections is rising again in the USA too – and winter is only just beginning. So President Joe Biden reiterated what he had been saying for days: “The omicron variant is a cause for concern, but not panic. And we will fight it with science and speed, not with chaos and confusion.”

The problem: science does not yet know enough to assess the danger posed by Omikron. It is simply not yet clear whether the transferability is higher and the effectiveness of the vaccines available to date may be lower, according to virologist Fauci: “It is simply far too early for such statements about Omikron.”

Measures planned for the winter

But the Biden government wants to prevent a fifth wave of infections. And the president therefore wants to present a new anti-corona strategy for the winter: “Not with new shutdowns or lockdowns. But with vaccinations, boosters, testing and more.”

For example, according to US media reports, the entry requirements are to be tightened again. All travelers would then not only have to be vaccinated, but also submit a negative test at check-in for the flight to the USA, which must not be older than one day – so far there have been three. And they should have to be tested again a few days after entering the country. A quarantine for several days for all immigrants is also apparently being considered.

For US top virologist Anthony Fauci, the most important measures in the fight against the Corona variant Omikron are vaccinations and boosters.

Image: EPA

Fauci encourages citizens

Virologist Fauci did not want to comment on these plans. But ultimately only vaccinations and boosters help in the global fight against the corona virus. Because the higher the global vaccination protection, the less chance the virus has to mutate further. And to develop further new variants.

Fauci promised all Americans who are discouraged after almost two years of Corona: “Without a doubt, I guarantee you: it will be over at some point.”

After the 1st Omikron case in the USA: Biden presents a new anti-corona strategy today

Julia Kastein, ARD Washington, December 2nd, 2021 9:10 am

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