CDC Says Omicron Cases Could Fall As Fast As They Rise

Despite the astronomical increase in Omicron-related Covid cases across the country, the number is expected to drop just as rapidly, said Dr. Rochelle Valensky said at a media briefing on Friday – the first time without him the rest of the White House’s COVID-19 task force in nearly six months.

The rise and fall of Covid diagnoses has historically been characterized as “waves”, but Valensky suggests that the omicron rise in the US may be referred to as an “ice pick”, with a dramatic rise and fall in cases similar to those in South Africa. can be seen more in what has passed omicron surge,

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“I think in places where we’re seeing a really huge decline, we may well be seeing a decline as well,” Valensky said during the briefing.

Currently, new Covid cases in the US are up 204 percent compared to two weeks ago, according to an NBC News analysis.

Record number of pediatric cases

On Friday, the CDC released new data on hospitalizations specifically related to Covid among children. Hospitalization rates are also rising among the youngest children for whom there is no vaccine: ages 0 to 4.

As of the week ending January 1, 4.3 per 100,000 children under the age of 5 were admitted to a hospital with Covid-19, Valensky said.

“While children still have the lowest rate of hospitalization of any group, pediatric hospitalization is at the highest rate compared to any prior point in the epidemic,” she said.

Indeed, more than a dozen states across the country have reported Record Pediatric Hospital According to data from NBC News, COVID-19 is linked.

“It could very well be that there are more cases out there,” Valensky said.

isolation guidelines

During Friday’s briefing, Dr. Henry Walke, head of the CDC’s Division of Preparedness and Emerging Infections, defended the agency’s defense. Recent recommendations on isolation,

The agency said that people can use rapid antigen test They want their isolation to be around day five, but they don’t need it.

Walke said the results of a rapid test conducted late in the course of the Covid-19 disease do not tell how contagious a person remains.

“Wearing a well-fitting mask is recommended even after those five days of isolation, regardless of the result of the test,” he said.

Isolation refers to the period of five days after a person tests positive, when that person should stay away from others including family members. CDC said people are most contagious a day or two before Symptom Starting, and after two to three days.

The CDC does not require a negative test to leave isolation after five days, unless patients have symptoms. However, even asymptomatic patients should wear a mask for an additional five days.

Does Omicron infection protect against delta type?

Valensky said early evidence suggests the Omicron variant may help protect people from the delta variant. On the other hand, “we have an indication that if you had Delta, you are susceptible to infection from Omicron,” she said.

And will an Omicron infection protect a person from an Omicron re-infection? The CDC is launching studies to answer this question.

This is an important issue, as the new version quickly took hold in the US, which is the . is responsible for more than 95 percent of Covid-19 cases.

“This virus has changed, and it is constantly throwing curveballs,” Valensky said. “As the virus changes, the science changes.”

The CDC briefing Friday was the agency’s first briefing since late July. Such briefings used to be a mainstay of public health communication. In previous years, CDC has held weekly briefings on a variety of headline-grabbing health topics: flu, Vaping-associated lung diseases, Even that ebola,

But the agency – historically considered a gold standard among public health officials around the world – has struggled with its communication on COVID since the start of the pandemic.

The first, and perhaps most notable, example occurred during a CDC telebriefing in February 2020, when Dr. Nancy Messonnier, a former CDC official, warned Americans to prepare for an inevitable life-changing pandemic.

Valensky has attended regular White House news conferences covid-19 task force, usually with Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden.

But clear, direct communication from the CDC about its recommendations is the key for the agency to explain to Americans the rationale behind its guidance.

“It’s important to have access to CDC scientists who are working on these issues,” said Glenn Nowak, former chief of CDC communications and current co-director of the University of Georgia’s Center for Health and Risk Communication.

Lack of communication “It seems that CDC hasn’t given it a thorough thought, or that they don’t have answers to questions related to their recommendations and policies,” Nowak said.

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