NEW ORLEANS — The Louisiana Department of Health has reported the possible first case of the Omicron Variant of COVID-19 in Louisiana.
According to the report, the individual could be in the New Orleans area and has recently traveled within the U.S.
“We now know Omicron is here in Louisiana. This is cause for concern, but not panic,” said State Health Officer Dr. Joseph Kanter. “We have been expecting and preparing for this moment. To all Louisianans, the single best action you can take to protect yourselves and your families is to get yourself and loved ones vaccinated and boosted if eligible.”
The World Health Organization classified the new variant on Nov. 26 and was first reported in the Republic of South Africa and so far has been detected in more than 30 countries and at least 9 states.
The City of New Orleans released a statement:
"There is still much we do not know about this new variant in our community while we continue to deal with the effects of the last deadly strain. But the tools to protect ourselves and our family remain the same: masks and vaccinations are our biggest defenses", said Dr. Jennifer Avegno, Director of the New Orleans Health Department. "Don't wait until it's too late - anyone 18+ that received their second dose of the vaccine six months ago should get their booster shot now for the highest level of protection. And if you haven't gotten your COVID shot at all, you are at great risk from a variant that may be even more contagious than Delta. We must act now to keep Omicron from creating another devastating surge, so mask up and get fully vaccinated for your family, friends, and city."