Latest on coronavirus outbreak

US detects first omicron coronavirus case in California

Patient traveled Nov. 22 from South Africa, tested positive Nov. 29

Servet Günerigök   | 01.12.2021
US detects first omicron coronavirus case in California


The US identified its first case of the omicron coronavirus variant in the state of California, a top health official said Wednesday.

The California and San Francisco departments of public health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the case, according to Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

The patient was a traveler who returned Nov. 22 from South Africa and tested positive Nov. 29.

The individual is self-quarantining and all close contacts have been contacted and they have tested negative, Fauci said at the White House.

"The individual was fully vaccinated and experienced mild symptoms which are improving at this point," he added.

President Joe Biden said Monday the US will see cases of the omicron variant "sooner or later," but that is no reason to panic.

South African scientists announced Nov. 24 that they discovered the omicron variant, which has several mutations that may carry the risk of reinfection. Cases of the variant have since been found in a number of Western countries.

Last Friday, the World Health Organization declared the strain a "variant of concern."

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