The United States will finally remove the travel restrictions placed on eight southern African nations to help lessen the spread of the new COVID-19 Omicron strain.
Omicron Variant in Southern Africa
The variation was discovered in South Africa and has since spread around the globe. The World Health Organization and southern African authorities have decried the travel restriction as useless and unjustly detrimental to local businesses. Furthermore, the travel restriction, which took effect on Nov. 29, applied to almost all non-US nationals who had recently visited all of South Africa. On New Year’s Eve, the limitations will be abolished by then.
The decision was recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, White House Spokesman Kevin Munoz stated on Twitter. Munoz said that the temporary travel prohibitions allowed experts to do research on the new virus type and find that existing immunizations are effective at mitigating its effects.
The Omicron Spreads in the US
Omicron is quickly spreading across the United States, including among the vaccinated, however, the vast majority of patients hospitalized are unvaccinated. Much about the omicron coronavirus variety is unclear; scientists believe it spreads more easily than other coronavirus variants, such as delta. According to the government, 73 percent of new infections in the United States are caused by the omicron variety. While breakthrough infections have grown more prevalent among vaccinated individuals, they have seldom resulted in serious disease or hospitalization.
The quick spread of omicron, along with increased indoor activity throughout the winter, has resulted in a significant infection rise. According to statistics gathered by Johns Hopkins University, the seven-day rolling average of COVID-19 cases in the United States surpassed 160,000 this week. That is more than twice the late November norm.
While the new variety has not yet overrun the majority of domestic healthcare systems, it has wreaked havoc on companies, sports leagues, and holiday travel plans throughout the nation. Numerous NBA and NFL games have been delayed as a result of COVID outbreaks, and the Hawaii Bowl, which was set for Friday, has been canceled entirely owing to Hawaii’s forced withdrawal. Three major airlines have announced the cancellation of dozens of local and international flights due to personnel shortages.