This is not to scare, but to inform. Hopefully you are all still willing to stay informed. Any new variant, especially one that is this *contagious, has the potential to increase hospitalizations and/or deaths.
UPDATES ARE IN COMMENTS
XBB.1.16, is a subvariant of Omicron and part of the new class of XBB subvariants. It is prevalent in India and made its way to North America and 20+ countries in the world thus far. We will all be seeing it soon.
*See US CDC chart below for the previous variant contagion (XBB1.5 from which this variant mutated...and the second pinned note)
📌 Ability to avoid prior immunity from a previous infection due to spike protein mutation
📌 XBB.1.16 is likely to be more contagious than prior variants*
📌 XBB.1.16 likely to produce more high fever
📌 More conjunctivitis, and pink eye with inflammation of the insides of the eyelids
📌 Eyes that are itchy and red, esp.in children.
All or some of these symptoms are still as likely as before...
Most common symptoms of COVID-19 remain:
Fever or chills
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Muscle or body aches
New loss of taste or smell
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
This chart shows the US variants of concern and how contagious XBB 1.5 is ... still. This new variant is likely even more contagious, but hopefully not as deadly as some predecessors. *The variant chart is updated in the comments or visit the CDC to keep track of variants in US HERE:https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#variant-proportions
*Scroll though updates to see the changes in the subvariants chart in the last year. It will help give you an understanding of why our immunity wanes so much over time, and why boosters targetting the most virulent in circulation are still so important.
This is the Whitehouse answer to COVID (not that COVID gives a shit)
In closing, know that COVID will never give a shit that CDC or the Whitehouse or antivaxxers or hospitals and clinics and dentists declare it over, which nearly all have.
I will still be wearing an N95 mask whenever I leave the house and am with people I do not know... Am I going to be alone?