The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is sending the world into a panic due especially to the theory that it could be resistant to the vaccine. It originated in South Africa, leading to many countries making the decision to shut their borders to this part of the world. It’s unclear as of yet whether infection from Omicron causes a more severe disease compared to Delta and other variants. It is also unknown if the Omicron variant is more transmissible, but more details about all of these factors will continue to pour in over the coming days and weeks. Many physicians are urging caution and advocating for a “wait and see” approach. Infectious Disease Doctor Richard Lessells said about this news on Twitter, “just a note of caution - We know that getting a rapid understanding of disease severity with #Omicron (particularly in vaccinated individuals and re-infections) is absolutely critical, but it's just too early for reliable data.” News of the variant also sent the stock market into a freefall, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 2.5% on Thursday, making it the worst day for stocks of the year. Hopefully all of the panic turns out to be unwarranted and the world can soon continue on its roadmap of getting back to normal.
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