It looks like another long, gloomy winter for California hospitality due to the extremely infectious omicron variant. Last week, Omicron accounted for an estimated three-fourths of all cases in the United States, less than a month after its detection.
It’s spreading faster than immunizations can keep up, prompting professional sports teams to reschedule games, shutting down Broadway, and forcing officials to contemplate new regulations and limitations.
Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday that he plans to announce details today of a requirement that all California healthcare workers get booster shots.
“With Omicron on the rise, we’re taking immediate actions to protect Californians and ensure our hospitals are prepared.”
The first confirmed case in the United States was a tourist who returned to San Francisco and tested positive on Nov. 29. Since then, California’s positive rate has risen steadily, reaching 3 percent on Monday. Sacramento County public health authorities revealed the county’s first two Omicron cases on Tuesday.
Regardless of immunization status, the entire state is subject to an indoor mask regulation until Jan. 15, with comparable measures in force at public and private enterprises until mid April. So far, there hasn’t been another state-imposed lockdown.
According to official estimates, 26.5 million California citizens have been completely vaccinated, accounting for 70% of the state’s population, while another 3.1 million, or 8%, have gotten one shot. However, this implies that more than one in every five Californians is entirely unvaccinated.
While specialists are unsure if this latest variant produces severe sickness, scientists believe those who have been immunized will require a booster injection to avoid becoming infected. Approximately 8.7 million California residents have gotten booster injections. It is not clear how effective vaccinations are going to prove for this new variant.
Biden announced plans to deploy thousands more soldiers and medical personnel to beleaguered hospitals, prepare shipments of protective gear to hard-hit places, and increase vaccination and testing sites.