With a surge in the positivity rate of the Omicron variant, scare and fear among people has increased. However, panic is not the right solution and neither is negligence. The only solution for this problem is following COVID Safety guidelines and measures. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of CDC states, “Prevention is our best option: get vaccinated, get boosted, wear a mask in public indoor settings in areas of substantial and high community transmission, and take a test before you gather”.
Is the Omicron variant more severe than the Delta variant?
Additionally, current research on the Omicron variant by scientists has revealed that the transmissibility rate is high; however, the severity is less as compared to the Delta variant. Additionally, people who are vaccinated with both doses have a lesser impact of the Omicron variant as compared to those who are not. Therefore, the best way to protect yourself from this variant is to get vaccinated and follow COVID Safety measures and guidelines declared by the World Health Organization.
Updated Guidelines Issued by CDC
In view of the current scenario, the CDC has issued fresh guidelines regarding the isolation and the quarantine period for the general population. Since the majority of the SARS-CoV-2 transmission occurs early in the course of illness, therefore the isolation time has been reduced to 5 days.
The updated guidelines issued by CDC are:
- People who are tested positive for COVID-19 virus will have to be in quarantine for 5 days.
- If asymptomatic after 5 days, then further quarantine is not required and they are only supposed to wear a well-fitted mask and maintain social distancing for the next 5 days.
- Additionally, those who have received the booster shot are not required to quarantine themselves after exposure to the virus and just need to wear a proper well-fitted mask and maintain social distancing for 10 days.
- People who have not received their booster dose but are vaccinated with the second dose are required to quarantine for 5 days if exposed to someone with COVID-19.
- Additionally, as per the new guidelines from the CDC, it is not mandatory to take the COVID-19 test after the end of the five-day isolation period.
Prevention is better than Cure
Recent research on the Omicron variant has revealed that the booster dose increases the effectiveness of the vaccine against infection to a great extent. It decreases the risk of severity of the disease, hospitalization, and mortality rate. Therefore, vaccination is the best method to protect ourselves from the Omicron variant and reduce its impact. Stressing on this point, Rochelle states, “CDC’s updated recommendations for isolation and quarantine balance what we know about the spread of the virus and the protection provided by vaccination and booster doses. These updates ensure people can safely continue their daily lives”.