New Subvariant of Omicron Continues Spread in U.S., Midwest: CDC Estimates

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

A new subvariant of omicron are making up an increasing proportion of the COVID cases in the United States, according to the latest estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to that data, the majority of cases in the United States are still made up by the BA.2 subvariant of omicron, but that number has dropped to 56.4% this week.

The BA.2.12.1 variant, which has been responsible for a large surge in cases, especially in the northeast, is now up to 42.6% of COVID cases this week.

According to officials, the other two main subvariants of omicron, BA.1.1 and B.1.1.529, are making up fewer than 1% of new cases as of this week.

While the BA.2.12.1 variant, which officials fear may be up to 50% more transmissible than previous COVID subvariants, has been causing huge spikes in cases in most parts of the country, estimated numbers of the virus’ spread in the Midwest have lagged slightly behind.

In the Midwest region, which includes Illinois, BA.2 is responsible for roughly 64% of estimated cases this week. Cases of BA.2.12.1 are now responsible for 35%, officials said.

Cases are on the rise in various places around the United States, leading to some fears of a summer surge as immune protection offered by previous iterations of omicron may begin to wane in some patients.

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