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Covid Whiplash: Now_freckle removal laser before and after

2022-08-09 08:54:09 Form:Technology freckle - professional freckle author: click:536
Tom Tapp·3 min read

Just as most Americans have caught wind of the BA.2 variant of Omicron — which overtook the original Omicron as the dominant strain in the U.S. less than a month ago — another possibly faster-growing version of Omicron is quickly making inroads.

The new Omicron sublineage BA.2.12.1 now accounts for 19% of all new cases specifically sequenced for variants in the country, according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. That means the strain — barely on the national radar two weeks ago — is now being identified in close to 1 in 5 newly-sequenced cases, up from 1.5% less than a month before on 3/19. Given that, Americans trying to keep up may be experiencing a form of variant whiplash.

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A chart showing the recent growth of BA.2.12.1 (in orange) vs. BA.2 (pink) - Credit: CDC
A chart showing the recent growth of BA.2.12.1 (in orange) vs. BA.2 (pink) - Credit: CDC

CDC

Last week, when Deadline first reported on BA.2.12.1, the variant was tied to the parallel rise of another BA.2 sublineage, BA.2.12. Both are sublineages of the BA.2 variant, and thought to have a 23%–27% growth advantage over BA.2, according to the New York State Department of Public Health. BA.2 is thought to have an estimated 30% growth advantage over the original Omicron.

New York officials announced last week, seemingly out of nowhere that “For the month of March, BA.2.12 and BA.2.12.1 rose to collectively comprise more than 70% prevalence in Central New York and more than 20% prevalence in the neighboring Finger Lakes region. Data for April indicate that levels in Central New York are now above 90%.”

Then: “State health officials have determined that these highly contagious new variants are likely contributing to the rising cases.”

At the end of the first week of March, the 7-day average number of daily new cases in the state was well under 2,000. By April 13, it was over 5,000, according to the New York Times, with the total number of new positive cases that day, according to state data, at 6,546. Since then, while case numbers have risen and fallen with fluctuating daily test numbers, the 7-day average test positivity in New York has risen from 4.6% to 5.9%.

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