Atlanta

Doctors say ‘stealth omicron’ seen in Georgia could be more transmissible than original

ATLANTA — Cases of COVID-19 are heading in the right direction, but doctors say we still need to be careful.

The State Department of Public Health has confirmed that cases of “stealth omicron” have been seen in Georgia.

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State health officials told Channel 2′s Justin Wilfon that there are currently fewer than 50 cases in the Peach State.

Wilfon spoke with a doctor at Piedmont who said what she does know about the new variant is that it is even more transmissible than the original form of the omicron variant.

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Dr. Jayne Morgan with Piedmont says that people who have had the omicron variant are not immune from contracting BA2 or “Stealth Omicron.”

“It appears BA2 can still re-infect those who were infected with BA1 that we know of as Omicron,” Dr. Morgan said.

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The World Health Organization says stealth omicron appears to be 30% more contagious than the original omicron variant, which allows it to spread even more rapidly.

Studies show conflicting findings about whether the new variant causes more severe symptoms. So far, the CDC believes that it does not.

“The most worrisome quality that this particular variant has, is that it evades our medical therapeutics,” Dr. Morgan explained.

Dr. Morgan adds, though, that is unclear if this latest variant will cause a spike in cases.

She says that those with a booster shot are much more protected against stealth omicron.

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