MDH says to be prepared for Omicron variant in MN ‘at some point’

[anvplayer video=”5074890″ station=”998128″]

(ABC 6 News) – Minnesota Department of Health officials are keeping an eye out for this new variant.

The first case of the Omicron variant was detected in the U.S. on Thursday and MDH is closely tracking international reports on this new COVID-19 variant.

Although not yet detected in Minnesota, MDH Commissioner Jan Malcolm said with the history of COVID-19, especially the Delta variant and how easily transmissible it is, this virus can move very quickly around the world.

Malcolm added we should be prepared for Omicron to show up in Minnesota at some point.

"Viruses, all viruses, mutate all the time and each new infection in a person is a new opportunity for the virus to change. That is just one of many reasons why it’s so important here in Minnesota and all around the world that we do what we can to limit the rate of those new infections and limit the opportunities for the virus to evolve," Malcolm said.

Commissioner Malcolm said over the next several weeks, we don’t necessarily need to wait for the research to be done on this new variant to know some of the things we can do to protect ourselves against COVID-19, including all variants.

Malcolm said, of course, those who are eligible to get vaccinated as health experts continue to do more research as to how much more transmissible Omicron is and if booster doses of the vaccine will protect us against this new variant.