Stock Groups

Fauci says omicron will become dominant Covid variant soon, urges booster shots


Anthony Fauci, the director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, addresses a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing held at Dirksen Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C., 07/20/2021.

Reuters| Pool | Reuters

WASHINGTON — Dr. Anthony Fauci, President Joe Biden’s top medical advisor, said Thursday that omicron will become the dominant Covid-19 variant in the United States within a few weeks, urging people to get vaccines and booster shots to fight it off.

It is the most transmittable virus in Covid we have dealt with. This virus will quickly become the dominant one here. It’s something we all know,” Fauci stated to the virtual U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation audience.

Fauci urged people who are not yet inoculated against Covid and those who are eligible for a booster to receive their doses. Fauci described the threat posed by the omicron strain as “a danger in front of us now.”

He stated that if you consider the current pace of infection, the situation will only get worse when we reach the middle of winter. Things could turn very bad for those who are not vaccinated, especially if omicrons start to breathe down their backs.

Omicron can be more infectious than other variants but it’s not clear if it causes milder or more severe diseases than the past.

Fauci indicated that anyone who has been vaccinated or received booster shots will be “relatively well protected, at minimum against serious disease.”

Earlier this week, the World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that at least 77 countries have reported cases of omicronHowever, the variant may be more common and is still being identified.

Tedros stressed that vaccines are not enough to prevent omicron in countries, and emphasized the need for social distancing and masks.

Fauci said that there is a revival in the U.S. delta-based variant.

Delta is still a problem. Fauci said that we are looking at Omicron from the sidelines. They will take over a major role in January, as I imagine it would be within weeks.

The delta we are dealing with now shows an increase of every parameter. There is an increase for cases and hospitalizations. Deaths remain at 1,100. We are facing a very difficult situation especially among the unvaccinated. Fauci explained that these people are highly vulnerable.

CNBC’s Spencer Kimball contributed from New York to this report.