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Covid Variants Are Surging In Europe. It May Be Time To Get Your Covid Booster Shot.

The likelihood of a recurrence of COVID increases as the temperature drops and individuals spend more time indoors, where the virus can spread more quickly. What is occurring in Europe serves as the first portent of what may be in store. Numerous European nations, notably Italy, France, and the United Kingdom, have seen an increase in infections.

With the onset of cooler weather, a new COVID-19 wave appears to be developing in Europe, and public health experts are warning that booster uptake will likely be constrained by vaccine weariness and misunderstanding about the varieties of available vaccines.

The bulk of infections are still being dominated by the Omicron subvariants BA.4/5 that predominated this summer, but newer Omicron subvariants are gaining ground. Scientists are monitoring hundreds of novel Omicron strains, according to World Health Organization (WHO) authorities this week.

US COVID developments have followed those of Europe.

Americans can now obtain updated booster shots that are directed against the circulating Omicron strains.

Younger children may be able to obtain the improved COVID boosters as early as October, according to FDA approval. Naturally, the vaccines will need to be approved by the FDA and suggested for use in those age groups by the CDC. Pfizer and Moderna have both requested that the FDA approve those boosters for young children, and  the FDA’s evaluation of the evidence and approval is still under review.

The boosters are identical to the boosters made available to people 12 and older in September in that they both target the original COVID-19 strain and the Omicron BA.4, BA.5 subvariants. It’s crucial to remember that Pfizer and Moderna’s original monovalent booster dosages are still accessible for this younger population. Then, in accordance with CDC recommendations, kids and adults who have recently had COVID may want to postpone getting their booster shot for three months.

The Mayo Clinic has a tracker that monitors COVID-19 infections. As of Oct 4th, 2022, a surge is recorded in the eastern part of the United States, where the weather get cooler as we enter deeper into fall.

Wastewater surveillance can provide an early warning of COVID-19’s spread in communities.

People infected with SARS-CoV-2 can shed the virus in their feces, even if they don’t have symptoms. The virus can then be detected in wastewater, enabling wastewater surveillance to capture presence of SARS-CoV-2 shed by people with and without symptoms. This allows wastewater surveillance to serve as an early warning that COVID-19 is spreading in a community. Once health departments are aware, communities can act quickly to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Data from wastewater testing support public health mitigation strategies by providing additional crucial information about the prevalence of COVID-19 in a community.

 

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