After a couple of years, it’s become fully apparent that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live forever, from our work arrangements to our recreational activities and social lives. This new reality poses unique sets of challenges for all of us, and we have carried on and adapted to life in the new normal.
What Is the Omicron Variant?
A new variant of SARS-CoV-2, the B.1.1.529, was detected by specimens collected from South Africa. It was named Omicron by the World Health Organization (WHO) and declared a variant of concern (VOC) in November due to its high number of mutations that may impact the way it behaves.
By December, Omicron overtook Delta as the dominant COVID-19 variant in the country. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that more than 73% of new cases in the USA were caused by the Omicron variant.
Safety Tips to Help Stop the Spread of the Virus
The Omicron variant is here, and it’s more contagious than the other variants that came before it. It’s as important as ever to stay cautious and know how to protect yourself from any of these variants out there. Here are essential safety tips you need to know this 2022:
1. Get Vaccinated
COVID-19 vaccination is effective, safe, and free. The vaccine benefits everybody and is especially important in preventing high-risk people like older adults, pregnant women, and people with medical conditions from developing severe illnesses due to COVID-19. Booster shots are now available for vaccinated individuals who want added protection against the virus.
2. Keep Hands Clean
Keeping your hands clean by washing them is the most important step to avoid spreading the virus. People always touch their eyes, nose, and mouth without even realizing it, resulting in an increased risk of infections. To avoid this, frequent handwashing is recommended.
3. Wear a Mask
To reduce the spread of COVID, the CDC advises people to consider wearing a mask especially in crowded places, and for activities with close interactions with those who are not fully vaccinated.
4. Keep Observing Social Distancing
Keep at least a six-foot distance between yourself and others. The goal of social distancing is to prevent sick people from coming in close contact with others, thus reducing opportunities for disease transmission.
5. Cover Coughs and Sneezes
If you don’t have a mask on, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue, or use the inside of your elbow when coughing or sneezing. Dispose of used tissues in the trash bin, and wash your hands with soap and water. If you cannot wash your hands, use a hand sanitizer that’s alcohol-based.
6. Take COVID-19 Tests
Early detection is the best tool in fighting the spread of coronavirus. Universal PCR and antigen-based rapid diagnostic tests continue to detect infection of COVID-19, including Omicron.
COVID-19 and Omicron Testing
If you feel any of the symptoms of the virus, it’s best to get tested immediately. At Dynamic Diagnostics, we offer FREE Rapid and PCR tests for everyone, even to those without health insurance. Dynamic Diagnostics US is a Chicago-based testing company with a goal to make free COVID-19 testing accessible to all. We have 50 testing locations across the USA that are doing their best to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Give us a call at +1-800-601-6561 today.