In NYC, there were many cases of omicron COVID variant spotted in many omicron cases
NEW YORK (AP) Multiple cases of the omicron coronavirus variant have been detected in New York, according to health officials, including a man who attended an anime convention in Manhattan in late November and tested positive for the variant when he returned home.
In addition to the conventioneer who was vaccinated for COVID-19, government officials said tests showed five other people recently infected with the virus had the variant. They included a person in the citys Long Island suburbs who had recently traveled to South Africa, residents of Brooklyn and Queens, and another case possibly linked to travel. At least one person had received a COVID-19 vaccination but officials did not specify the vaccination status of the four other cases.
At a news conference with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Gov. Kathy Hochul said, "We still gather facts on the issues, but there was no reason for alarm."
"We simply want to make sure that the public is aware of information when we receive it," she explained.
De Blasio stated that the variation was under community spread in the city due to its geographical distribution, and that it wasnt tied to any single event.
We gotta assume there's a lot more behind it, and that it's been here for a considerable amount of time, he added.
The news came a day after the United States released its first known case of crimes in the United States.
Officials disclosed another case in a Colorado woman who had recently traveled to southern Africa, according to a source.
According to event organizers, the Anime NYC 2021 convention on Nov. 19-21 drew approximately 50,000 people, and attendees were required to wear masks and demonstrate proof of having received at least one COVID-19 vaccination.
The man who attended the event had not traveled outside of the United States and began experiencing symptoms the day after the convention, which Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said made it perhaps the most likely, that the man contracted COVID-19 at the New York City convention, but officials didn't know for sure.
Officials in New York said they were attempting to trace attendees of the convention, which was held at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center as New York City prepared to host the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and braced for throngs of tourists to return after the event.
Officials in the city of 8.8 million predicted that the new variant would be revealed only in a matter of time. City Health Commissioner Dave Chokshi urged individuals who attended the event to undergo testing.
This is not simply due to people traveling to southern Africa or to other parts of the world where omicron has already been identified, Chokshi said on Thursday.
According to health officials in his home state, the Minnesotan began experiencing mild symptoms Nov. 22. He was vaccinated and received a booster shot in early November, and his symptoms have subsided, officials said.
The person infected in the California case returned to the United States from South Africa on Nov. 22, symptoms that were mild and tested positive Monday.
Much remains unclear about the new variant, including whether it is more bacterial, as some health authorities suspect, whether it makes people more severe ill, or whether it can thief the vaccination.
Scientists are examining how Omicron may compare to the most common delta variant in terms of transmissibility and severity. The degree to which existing vaccinations and therapies protect against omicron is also being considered by the World Health Organization as a "variant of concern."
Scientists in South Africa first reported it, but the samples were from various southern Africa nations, according to health officials in the Netherlands. The Netherlands now claim it was discovered there before the South Africa detection.
As comfort over air travel improves, new options like omicron will undoubtedly expand from state to state and state to state, said professor Danielle Ompad, an epidemiologist at New York University's School of Global Public Health.
"We shouldn't panic, but we should be concerned," she said.
Hochul stated that the Minnesota visitor case highlighted the need for everyone who is well-equipped to be vaccinationized against COVID-19 or receive a booster shot if they haven't already.
There's one way to get rid of this: New Yorkers, get immunized, get boosted, and get ready, the Democrat stated.
MICHELLE L. PRICE and BOBBY CAINA CALVAN Associated Press' BIPTY AND CALVAN
Marina Villeneuve, the writers of Associated Press in Albany, New York; Doug Glass, the writers, Dave Kolpack, Fargo, North Dakota; and Gretchen Ehlke in Milwaukee contributed to this presentation.