A recent study shows that a primary COVID-19 vaccine series does not produce antibodies capable of recognizing and neutralizing the omicron variant — but, when combined with a booster, there is a striking neutralization against the variant.
As more indoor venues require proof of vaccination and new variants loom, scientists and public health officials are debating when it will be time to change the definition of “fully vaccinated” to include a booster shot.
As of Saturday evening, the omicron variant had been detected in at least 15 different states. And while it's too early to say if the most recent variant of concern will be as dangerous as delta, preliminary evidence suggests it may spread faster and be more likely to reinfect individuals who previously contracted coronavirus.
The omicron variant surfaced in November in several southern African nations. It set off alarm bells worldwide when public health officials in South Africa saw it beginning to outcompete the previous reigning variant, delta.