New US push for vaccines and boosters to stem Omicron “rabies”: Fauci

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WASHINGTON – The Omicron virus is raging across the world as the winter holiday season approaches, making COVID-19 vaccinations and booster shots more crucial than ever for American travelers, the medical adviser said on Sunday Chief of the White House, Dr Anthony Fauci.

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Omicron has so far been found in testing in 43 of 50 U.S. states and around 90 countries after being first identified in southern Africa and Hong Kong in late November.

The number of cases doubles in 1.5 to 3 days in areas of community transmission and is spreading rapidly in countries with high population immunity, the World Health Organization said on Saturday.

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“It’s just, you know, raging in the world,” Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press”.

The impact of the virus is spreading across the United States, with hospitalizations increasing, sports games being rescheduled and entertainment venues canceling shows.

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Since the start of the month, COVID cases and deaths in the United States have increased by about 50% and the number of hospitalized COVID patients has increased by 26%, according to a Reuters tally https://tmsnrt.rs/ 34pvUyi.

President Joe Biden was planning to give a speech on the fast-spreading variant on Tuesday and plans to combat it, hammering out his message to unvaccinated Americans to get vaccinated and to those who are vaccinated to receive a booster.

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Part of Biden’s plan is to focus on increasing testing, Fauci said on CNN’s “State of the Union” program.

“We have to do better,” he said. “We really need to flood the testing system. We need to have tests available for anyone who wants them. “

Fauci urged Americans traveling during the holidays to get an encore, wear masks and avoid crowded public spaces to help slow the spread of Omicron.

Traveling will increase the risk of infection even in people who have been vaccinated, Fauci said in an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press”.

“We’re going to see a breakthrough infection – there’s no question about it,” Fauci said.

A booster dramatically increases protection against serious illness from Omicron infection, Fauci said.

The Omicron variant will likely overtake Delta as the dominant variant in the United States, he added.

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