A vaccinated Minnesota man, who attended a two-day anime convention at NYC’s Javits Center in November, has been confirmed to be the second omicron variant case in the U.S. The first was announced in California on Dec. 1.
While Omicron has yet to be confirmed in New York, Gov. Kathy Hochul has said, “It’s coming.”
The Minnesota case is an adult male who lives in Hennepin County and is fully vaccinated, officials said. The man attended the Anime NYC 2021 convention at the Javits Center from Nov. 19 10 Nov. 21. He developed mild symptoms on Nov. 22 and was tested for covid-19 two days later, officials said. He tested positive and for the Omicron variant. This is possibly the first case of community transmission.
According to Hochul, the Javits Anime convention organizers have a complete list of those who attended the two-day event. She said contact tracing should move along much faster than it would have a year or even six months ago.
“This news is concerning, but it is not a surprise. We know that this virus is highly infectious and moves quickly throughout the world. Minnesotans know what to do to keep each other safe now — get the vaccine, get tested, wear a mask indoors, and get a booster. Together, we can fight this virus and help keep Minnesotans safe,” Minnesota Governor Tim Walz said in a statement.
“BREAKING—New domestic-travel only #Omicron case identified in Minnesota of a travelers who visited New York City and attended an anime convention at the Javits Center Nov 19-21, and got symptoms on Nov 22nd.With such timeline, it could be now across US.,” tweeted epidemiologist and health economist Eric Feigl-Ding @DrEricDing.
The omicron variant has scientists and world leaders concerned.
Omicron was first detected in South Africa, according to the World Health Organization.
The World Health Organization classifies Omicron as a “Variant of Concern” and scientists are studying to determine how it may compare with the predominant Delta variant in terms of transmissibility and disease severity, according to the Minnesota Department of Health.
Omicron has now been confirmed in San Francisco, California, and Minnesota and is now expected to be detected in New York soon, NBC New York reported.
“This one is more significant than the SF case yesterday because SF #Omicron had South Africa travel. This MN case had only domestic travel. And Nov 19-21 in NYC dates it before the variant was discovered and reported for the first time by South African authorities!,” Feigl-Ding tweeted.
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