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Omicron variant’s arrival in Kansas is only a ‘matter of time’ health officials say

Coronavirus in Kansas

An employee draws up a syringe with the Pfizer vaccine against the coronavirus and the COVID-19 disease at vaccination bus in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021. Germany battles rising numbers of coronavirus infections. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

TOPEKA (KSNT) – It is only a “matter of time” that the COVID-19 variant Omicron will arrive in the United States and, eventually, Kansas.

According to a recent report from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, the variant Omicron is being monitored with no confirmed cases in the U.S. to date. Much about the variant is unknown including how quickly it will spread, but it has been reported in 17 countries abroad with the assumption that it will eventually reach the U.S.

Fifty-two percent of eligible Kansans have been fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus and are more prepared for Omicron than previous variants. It is the belief by experts that the current COVID-19 vaccine will continue to protect those who are vaccinated from severe disease and death. Those who have taken boosters are considered to be even more prepared for the variant as boosters increase antibody response.

The KDHE encourages Kansans to get the vaccine and follow-up booster shots to be fully prepared for the event that Omicron reaches the state. Necessary steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 or the new variant remain the same.

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