“When we look at the latest data that just came out from London, so a context epidemiologically, socially and culturally much like ours, unlike South Africa, they are not seeing a decrease in hospitalization rates or severity of symptoms with omicron. Their omicron outbreak is ahead of ours. We had better take that very seriously,” he added
“When you take a virus that’s much more transmissible and has an equal chance of causing hospitalization and severe symptoms, you’re talking about a virus that has the capacity to cause a surge in hospitalization and deaths, and that underscores the recommendation that you continue to wear masks, continue to distance, continue to sanitize your hands and get that booster dose of vaccine.”
For those who are gathering with family and friends for the Christmas holiday, Poland said he wants everyone to gather safely ― not spread disease to one another ― and that means everyone is fully vaccinated with a booster vaccine.
“The second thing you want to do is get a rapid test before you’re going to gather with people that you have not immediately been around over the last week or so. The problem now is there’s this surge demand for testing as people waited to make appointments. If it’s not possible to do that, I would give strong consideration, if possible, to holding your celebration outdoors, or if that’s not possible, masking. I know that won’t be popular. But if you say our goal is to keep everybody safe, then it’s boosters, rapid testing and if you can’t do those, masking.”
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