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U.S. coronavirus: New York’s final vaccine term begins Monday as Omicron spreads

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U.S. coronavirus: New York’s final vaccine term begins Monday as Omicron spreads

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“As we return from holiday gatherings, it is more important than ever to take precautions to limit the spread of COVID-19 this season,” Hochul said in a statement. “The vaccine is the best tool we have to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe as the New Year approaches.”

The highly contagious variant of Omicron was a factor in New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s decision to implement a vaccine mandate for private sector employees, he said earlier this month. this.
The updated rules require workers to receive at least one dose of vaccination by Monday and will not allow employees to opt out of vaccination through regular testing.

Children aged 5 to 11 in New York City are now also required to show proof of at least one injection before being allowed access to restaurants, a gym or indoor entertainment, and adults will need to show proof of two vaccinations for these areas.

Private sector demands align with those already in place for the city’s public sector employees and similar tightening restrictions in major cities across the country.

“We have to take very bold action. We are seeing restrictions start to come back. We are seeing closures,” de Blasio said. “We cannot let these restrictions revert. We cannot have closures in New York.”

The changes come as the city plans a “reduced” New Year’s celebration and follow-up interruptions for several Broadway shows.

Nationally, the seven-day average of daily new cases was 198,404 as of Sunday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

Experts continue to focus on vaccination

As cases spread in the United States, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is taking action to alleviate staffing shortages among healthcare workers.

The agency shortened its isolation time recommendations for fully vaccinated healthcare workers who test positive for Covid-19 but do not show symptoms.
Workers can return to work after seven days if they are asymptomatic and negative, and “isolation time may be further reduced in the event of staff shortages,” according to a CDC statement Thursday.

The agency also clarified that health workers do not need to quarantine “following high-risk exposures” if they have received all recommended vaccines, including a booster. Quarantine refers to when people who have been exposed to the virus but have not yet been diagnosed with infection should avoid others.

The CDC stressed that the new guidelines do not extend to the general public and only apply to healthcare workers.

The change was spurred by the expected increase in hospitalizations due to the Omicron variant and the number of cases already stressing the healthcare system.

Currently, around 75% of all intensive care beds nationwide are in use and 21% are occupied by Covid-19 patients, according to data from the US Department of Health and Human Services.

Dr Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, said on Sunday that the Omicron variant poses a great threat to the healthcare system in the United States, despite evidence that it may not cause such a severe infection. than the previous variants.

“While we are happy with the evidence from several countries that it appears there is a lesser degree of severity, we must be careful not to become complacent about this as it could still lead to a lot of hospitalizations in the states. United, “Fauci told ABC” This Week “Sunday.

“We are especially concerned for those who are in this unvaccinated class, which you know, the tens and tens of millions of Americans eligible for vaccination who have not been vaccinated, they are the most vulnerable when you have a. virus that is extraordinarily good at reaching and affecting people the Omicron way, ”said Fauci.

Currently, 72.7% of the U.S. population has received at least one dose of the vaccine, 61.7% are fully vaccinated with two doses, and 31.5% have received a booster, according to CDC data.

Coronavirus Brings Holiday Travel Problems and Obstacles for Sporting Events

In addition to the wintry weather in parts of the country, travelers hitting the road after Christmas are faced with the rapid spread of the Omicron variant and its effects on the country’s transportation system.
U.S. coronavirus: New York’s final vaccine term begins Monday as Omicron spreads

 |  Today Headlines
Thousands of flights were canceled over the bank holiday weekend, in part due to the virus affecting airline flight crews and ground staff. Some passengers are still being re-hired to start them. About 1,500 flights were canceled Sunday according to flight tracking website FlightAware, and more than 700 were canceled early Monday morning.
And at least four ocean-going cruise ships have been turned away from ports or banned from letting passengers disembark over the past week due to cases of Covid-19 on board.

The modified cruises represent a small fraction of the dozens of cruise ships underway in the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, the wider Atlantic and the Pacific at any given time this month.

Experts urge travelers to get vaccinated or boosted to avoid serious illness.

In addition to the impacts on travelers, sporting events have also been postponed or canceled due to the increased spread of Covid-19.

U.S. coronavirus: New York’s final vaccine term begins Monday as Omicron spreads

 |  Today Headlines
So far, five college football bowl games have been affected, including two games canceled this weekend.

The Annapolis, Md., Military Bowl, featuring Boston College and East Carolina University, will not be played on Monday, officials said. The first Fenway Bowl in Boston between the University of Virginia and Southern Methodist University, which had been set for Wednesday, will not be either.

The Miami Hurricanes have withdrawn from the Sun Bowl, scheduled for Friday in El Paso, Texas. Their opponent, the Washington State Cougars, is working with the Pac-12 conference and the Sun Bowl Association to find a replacement opponent.

Professional sports have also been slowed by the virus, affecting the National Hockey League and the National Basketball Association in the middle of their seasons.

CNN’s Artemis Moshtaghian, Jacqueline Howard, Forrest Brown, Veronica Stracqualursi, Pete Muntean, Aaron Cooper, Wayne Sterling and Jill Martin contributed to this report.

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