SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM)-- The Omnicron variant has been identified in Massachusetts, Mass DPH officials announced Saturday.
The variant was identified by sequencing performed at New England Biolabs. According to the Department of Public Health, the individual is identified as a Middlesex County female resident in their early 20s.
The woman, who is fully vaccinated, traveled out of state. She has experienced mild disease and did not need to be hospitalized.
The CDC and WHO have classified Omicron as a variant of concern.
According to Mass. DPH, scientists are still working to determine how the Omicron variant compares with the Delta variant in terms of disease severity and transmissibility, however, some limited evidence reports that the Omicron variant could be more transmissible than other COVID-19 variants, including the Delta variant.
DPH reports the Omicron variant is being monitored closely by public health officials globally
According to DPH, The three COVID-19 vaccines used in the United States are shown to be highly protective against COVID-19 variants and is the best way for people to protect themselves and others.
Other ways to help stop the spread of COVID-19 include getting tested and staying home if you are sick, handwashing, following masking requirements and telling your close contacts if you test positive for COVID-19.