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What You Need to Know About Variants

By  | May 4, 2022 | Filed under: News

ATLANTA, GA-Viruses constantly change through mutation and sometimes these mutations result in a new variant of the virus. Some variants emerge and disappear while others persist. New variants will continue to emerge. CDC and other public health organizations monitor all variants of the virus that cause COVID-19 in the United States and globally.

Scientists monitor all variants but may classify certain ones as variants being monitoredvariants of interestvariants of concern and variants of high consequence. Some variants spread more easily and quickly than other variants, which may lead to more cases of COVID-19.

 

Even if a variant causes less severe disease in general, an increase in the overall number of cases could cause an increase in hospitalizations, put more strain on healthcare resources and potentially lead to more deaths.

 

What You Need to Know

  • New variants of the virus are expected to occur.
  • Slowing the spread of the virus, by protecting yourself and others, can help slow the emergence of new variants.
  • The Omicron variant causes more infections and spreads faster than the original SARS-CoV-2 strain of the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • CDC is working with state and local public health officials to monitor the spread of all variants, including Omicron.
  • Getting a vaccine reduces your risk of severe illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. Staying up to date on your COVID-19 vaccines, which includes getting a booster when eligible, further improves your protection.

Variants Are Expected

Viruses constantly change through mutation and sometimes these mutations result in a new variant of the virus. Some variants emerge and disappear while others persist. New variants will continue to emerge. CDC and other public health organizations monitor all variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 in the United States and globally.

Some variants spread more easily and quickly than other variants, which may lead to more cases of COVID-19. Even if a variant causes less severe disease in general, an increase in the overall number of cases could cause an increase in hospitalizations, put more strain on healthcare resources and potentially lead to more deaths.

Media Release/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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