Fauci says U.S. ought to put together to do something and all the pieces to battle the omicron variant

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Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the Nationwide Institute of Allergy and Infectious Ailments, testifies through the Senate Well being, Training, Labor and Pensions Committee listening to titled Subsequent Steps: The Highway Forward for the COVID-19 Response, in Dirksen Constructing on Thursday, November 4, 2021.

Tom Williams | CQ-Roll Name, Inc. | Getty Photos

People must be ready to do “something and all the pieces” to battle the omicron Covid variant, U.S. infectious illness professional Dr. Anthony Fauci stated Sunday.

Nonetheless, it is “too early to say” whether or not lockdowns or new mandates shall be applicable, Fauci stated on ABC’s “This Week.”

The World Well being Group final week labeled omicron as a “variant of concern,” that means it’s extra contagious, extra virulent or extra expert at evading public well being measures, vaccines and therapeutics.

The variant, first found in South Africa, has a number of mutations to the spike protein that permits the virus to enter the physique, and a few of these mutations may result in elevated antibody resistance and transmissibility.

The U.S. had already stated it would restrict travel for non-U.S. citizens from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi. The variant has been found within the U.K., Israel, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Australia and Hong Kong, however not but within the U.S.

“Inevitably, it is going to be right here. The query is will we be ready for it? If and when, and it may be when, it comes right here hopefully we shall be prepared for it,” Fauci added.

Biotech firms have sprung into motion to battle in opposition to omicron. Moderna’s Chief Medical Officer Paul Burton stated Sunday the vaccine maker could roll out a reformulated vaccine in opposition to the omicron coronavirus variant early subsequent yr. Though it is not clear whether or not new formulations shall be wanted or if present vaccines will present applicable safety.

Fauci stated unvaccinated individuals ought to nonetheless get obtainable Covid vaccinations, per the suggestions of the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention.

“We simply actually need to, as I’ve stated so typically, put together for the worst. And it will not be that we will need to go the route persons are saying,” Fauci advised ABC. “We’ll make selections primarily based on the science and proof as we at all times do.”