Omicron variant FAQ: 8 key things to know about the new COVID strain
Two years and more than 5.2 million reported global deaths later, the omicron variant spreading around the globe is considered a highly mutated form of COVID-19. While the delta strain dominates in the US and globally, omicron could become the most common COVID variant in months, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.
"Mathematical modelling [sic] indicates that the Omicron VOC is expected to cause over half of all SARS-CoV-2 infections in the EU/EEA within the next few months" due to early understandings of the omicron variant's high transmissibility between people, the center said in a Dec. 2 brief.
In the US, President Joe Biden is doubling down on urging vaccines and booster shots until more information becomes available. Experts caution it could be two or three weeks before we know exactly how contagious omicron is and if it can cause more severe illness than other mutations of the virus.