On 21 December Texas reported what is widely believed to be the first death in the United States from the new Omicron version of the CCP (Communist Party of China) virus that causes the disease COVID-19.
Harris County Judge Lena Hidalgo confirmed Monday that an unvaccinated Houston man, aged 50, with underlying health conditions is believed to have suffered an Omicron-related death.
“It is sad to report the first local death from the Omicron version of COVID-19. A man in his 50s from the eastern side of Harris County who was not vaccinated, “Hidalgos wrote on twitter, before urging people to “please – get vaccinated and promoted”.
Harris Country Public Health (HCPH) also confirmed the death in a release and said the man was between the ages of 50-60, had been unvaccinated, and had previously been infected with COVID-19.
“The person was at higher risk of serious complications from COVID-19 because of his unrelated condition and had underlying health conditions,” health officials said.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the patient’s family, and we express our deepest sympathies,” said HCPH Executive Director Barbie Robinson. “It is a reminder of the seriousness of COVID-19 and its forms. We urge all residents who are eligible to be vaccinated and to get their booster shot if they haven’t already. ,
According to the county’s COVID-19 dashboard, there have been 2,797 COVID-19 related deaths in Harris County so far.
The death comes as Omicron, a highly mutated and more transmissible version of the CCP virus, also known as SARS-CoV-2, spread rapidly around the world after it was first detected in South Africa last month. Used to be.
During a briefing in Geneva on Monday, World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned against holiday celebrations over Christmas because virus cases could rise despite preliminary data suggesting that Omicron is another May present milder symptoms than strains.
Ghebreyesus said there was now “consistent evidence” that the latest version is spreading faster than the delta version, and urged people to cancel or delay celebratory gatherings.
“There is now consistent evidence that Omicron is spreading significantly faster than the delta variant, and that it is more likely that people who have been vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19 are infected or reinfected. : may be infected,” Ghebreyesus told reporters during a televised meeting.
“We are all sick of this pandemic. We all want to spend time with friends and family. We all want to get back to normalcy,” he said, adding that “the fastest way to do that is for all of us, leaders and individuals, to make the difficult decisions that must be made to protect ourselves and others.”
The WHO chief said that, in some cases, this could mean “cancelling or delaying events”, adding that “a canceled event is better than a life cancelled.”
“It is better to cancel now and celebrate later than to celebrate now and mourn later. None of us want to come here again in 12 months’ time,” he said.
The WHO designated Omicron “a form of concern” on 26 November.
As of December 20, omicrons have been detected in nearly every US state and territory. Such new cases accounted for 73.2 percent for the week ended December 18, up from 12 percent a week ago, according to data released Monday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Earlier in December, the United Kingdom reported the first publicly confirmed death globally involving Omicron. A total of 12 people have died in the UK from the latest version so far, and 104 people are currently hospitalized with it.