Monday, Dec 06, 2021 - 06:37:39
643 results - (0.013 seconds)

in South Africa:

latest news at page 1:
    OMICRON is already thought to be spreading among people in the UK in the lead up to Christmas. As scientists gather more data on the super strain, one worrisome sign is that it could be infecting children at a higher rate than before. 1Children may have a high temperature when infected with CovidCredit: Alamy The data come from South Africa, where the Omicron variant is driving a sudden fourth wave. Their demographics are different to the UK, where there are now at least 134 confirmed cases, and so it is not clear at this stage how the variant would behave from country to country. But British experts said it was "potentially a big issue we need to face up to". Children have until now been largely unaffected by the virus, only suffering mild disease in the large majority of cases. At this stage, it’s not clear how the emergence of Omicron will change this. But the common symptoms Covid have altered slightly through the pandemic in response to new variants and the vaccines. Most read in Health NewsCOVID SURGE Covid...
    Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy defended the U.S. maintaining the travel ban on South Africa and neighboring countries, despite the Omicron variant being detected in at least 16 states and elsewhere around the world. “This was put in place, these restrictions in travel first, because there [was] a growing number, a rapid growing number of cases that were found in South Africa,” Murthy told CBS’ Face the Nation on Sunday. “And the travel restrictions, they don’t permanently keep the variant out. We know that.” Host Margaret Brennan interrupted, “It’s here.” “What travel restrictions can do is buy you some time,” Murthy continued. “They can buy you some time to do important things.” Brennan then pressed how the Biden administration banning travel from a select group of countries was any different from former President Donald Trump‘s ban on travel only from China at the beginning of the pandemic. The Omicron variant has been detected in 38 other countries, but only eight countries in southern Africa face U.S. travel restrictions. “I’ve heard this from the White House, respectfully. But my question though...
    HOSPITAL wards in South Africa are filling up with sick kids that have Covid as the "super mutant" Omicron strain continues to sweep through the country. A South African doctor has said more kids are being hospitalised with severe Covid symptoms ever since the Omicrom variant took hold in the country. 3South Africa has registered an uptick of young kids being admitted to hospital with Covid Dr Rudo Mathivha, head of ICU at Chris Hani Barahwanath hospital, has said the shift in demographics means hospitals are again rapidly filling up with patients. She said her hospital is reportedly admitting around 5 to 10 kids at a time. Dr Mathivha told how a 15-year-old died after rapidly deteriorating following contracting the virus, and that a 17-year-old has been placed in ICU on a ventilator with Covid-related pneumonia. It's not immediately clear if they both had the Omicron variant. Speaking with the South African Broadcasting Corporation, the worried doctor said: "The situation is pretty concerning. This is not something that we had observed with the first, second and third wave. "In the...
    The outbreak of new Covid variant Omicron in the province of Gauteng in South Africa has triggered the sharpest rise in hospitalisations of any previous wave, sparking concerns that a similar outbreak in the UK could overwhelm the NHS. Gauteng alone has seen over 1,000 hospital admissions in the past week, quadrupling the figure recorded just two weeks ago, while South Africa recorded a total of 1,802 hospitalisations in the past week to Friday - the latest day for which data is available.  The virus also appears to be more transmissible, with cases up from around 300 three weeks ago to nearly 7,000 on a seven-day rolling average.   Cases have soared by a massive 408 per cent in just one week while deaths rose from eight to 21 across the same time period, according to the latest figures.  The country's National Institute for Communicable Diseases recorded another 16,366 cases on Saturday, with the vast majority in epicentre Gauteng province - a 408 per cent increase from last weekend when just 3,220 new infections were registered across the previous 24 hours.  It is...
    (CNN)African leaders are hitting back against travel bans imposed over the Omicron variant, accusing wealthy countries of being hypocrites for delivering new restrictions instead of the vaccine doses the continent desperately needs.Omicron, initially detected in Botswana, has reignited debate over the effectiveness of strict border closures and triggered outrage that South Africa's transparency in reporting the strain has led to what the region sees as its scapegoating. South African scientists were the first to identify the variant, which has since been detected in countries around the world. It has now emerged that Omicron was already present in Europe before the travel bans were announced. It's still not known where Omicron originated. And yet the travel restrictions have been squarely aimed at southern Africa -- including countries that have still not found evidence of the new variant. That has prompted a wave of fury from African politicians and public health officials, who are exasperated by the lack of support they've received from the West, which they say are now discriminating against countries still desperate for vaccine doses. These countries have found...
    MIAMI (CBSMiami) – On Friday evening, CBS4 News spoke to an infectious disease specialist who spent numerous years in South Africa, who is dealing with the new coronavirus variant, Omicron, which is causing worldwide concern. Studying rare viruses there. She has remained in contact with medical doctors and researchers – who said there is new information about this variant READ MORE: Glenneisha Darkins Perseveres During Art Week Despite ChallengesOne in specific – regarding children. If you are a parent especially, take a listen. “A very large fraction of the people who are getting sick are young including very young children under the age of 5 and because those numbers are large the number of children being hospitalized has increased to the point that it is very concerning.” Dr. Aileen Marty – an infectious disease specialist said the highly transmissible Omicron variant has increased hospital admissions in South Africa, particularly in the age group of 5 and under. While there have been no cases of children with Omicron in the United States, Dr. Marty said we must be aware and protect...
    Prince Albert and his older sister Princess Caroline have gotten into the festive spirit as they were seen taking their children to Monaco's Christmas village.  Albert, 63, marked the first weekend of December by taking his six-year-old twins Jacques and Gabriella to inaugurate the annual Christmas village, which comes complete with entertainment, festive decorations and fairground rides. He was joined by his sister Caroline, 64, her son Pierre Casiraghi, 34, and his wife Beatrice Borromeo, 36, who all appeared to be in good spirits at Friday's event. Albert's wife Charlene, 43, was absent from the festive outing, as she remains in treatment for physical and mental exhaustion following a 10-month absence in her native South Africa.  It is Albert's third public appearance with Jacques and Gabriella since Charlene was admitted to a treatment facility, and he was seen paying particular attention to them at both. Photographs showed Albert, who sported a face mask throughout the visit along with the rest of his family, leaning down to speak to the twins, while other snaps showed him picking up Jacques so he could pet a giant plastic...
    The “highly transmissible” Omicron variant of coronavirus ripping through South Africa is putting disproportionately large numbers of children under the age of 5 years old in hospitals, a top South African government medical adviser said Friday. The alarming development raises the prospect of a new global battle cycle against the virus, given that the new variant has already spread to dozens of countries. In a worrying virtual press conference, government adviser Waasila Jassat, speaking about the worst-affected area of Gauteng province that contains the city of Johannesburg, said: “It’s clear in Gauteng, the week-on-week increase we’re seeing in cases and admissions is higher than we’ve seen it before. We’ve seen quite a sharp increase [in hospital admissions] across all age groups but particularly in the under 5s.” She added: “The incidence in those under 5 is now second highest, second only to those over 60. The trend that we’re seeing now, that is different to what we’ve seen before, is a particular increase in hospital admissions in children under 5 years. “We’ve always seen children not being very heavily...
    SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF/AP) — A person who returned to the San Francisco Bay Area from a trip to South Africa has tested positive for the COVID omicron variant — the first confirmed case in the United States. Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease Dr. Anthony Fauci made the announcement Wednesday at the White House. The California and San Francisco Departments of Public Health and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that the case was caused by the omicron variant through genomic sequencing conducted at the University of California at San Francisco, and confirmed with the CDC. READ MORE: Bay Area Sees Rush to Get COVID Booster ShotsIn a news release, San Francisco officials said the individual was a traveler who returned from South Africa to San Francisco International on November 22. “The individual, who is a San Francisco resident, is self-isolating and is experiencing mild symptoms,” the officials said. “We are continuing to speak with the individual about any persons with whom they have been in contact.” The individual, who was not...
    A reporter from Today News Africa got into a testy exchange with White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Thursday and accused her of lying about Omicron variant travel restrictions. During the press briefing, Simon Ateba interrupted another White House correspondent’s question for Psaki. At one point during an exchange, Ateba states, “You are saying something that is false,” in regard to the White House’s travel restrictions on countries in Africa, including South Africa. (RELATED: Biden Announces New Travel Restrictions From South Africa, Seven Other Countries Due To New COVID Variant) “Simon, I answered a question on this. Let’s let Patsy ask a question,” Psaki said. Ateba continued to interject, however Psaki replied sharply, “It’s not effective to scream over your colleagues in here.” WATCH: Ateba was not called on by Psaki for the duration of the briefing, according to the New York Post. Psaki had a previous interaction with Ateba on Wednesday, as he tried questioning White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci about travel restrictions for 8 countries when only two of them had reported cases...
    COVID cases in South Africa have rocketed by more than 400 per cent in a week as the Omicron variant spreads. An explosion in infections saw 4,473 cases recorded yesterday, up from 868 cases last Tuesday, amid fears of the new super-strain. 1Covid cases have rocketed by more than 400 per cent in a weekCredit: EPA Yesterday's figures marked a 92 per cent leap from the 2,273 cases recorded on Monday. More than 10 per cent of the 42,000 people tested in the past 24 hours were found to be positive, with one leading virologist admitting the figures were "scary". Prof Tulio de Oliveira, director of the Centre for Epidemic Response and Innovation, tweeted: "Goodness me! Scary increase of cases and positivity rate in South Africa. "Please keep safe, use a mask and go for vaccination as 1000s of scientists in the world try to understand better." Experts fear the fast-spreading Omicron variant could evade some of the current vaccine protection. Gauteng province is the epicentre in the surge of in new Covid cases, with 72 percent of the day’s...
    The omicron variant of COVID-19 was present in the Netherlands a week before scientists detected it in South Africa, the Dutch National Institute of Public Health reported Tuesday. Though the agency, RIVM, first thought the variant had arrived in the country with 14 passengers who tested positive for it while entering the country from South Africa on Nov. 26, retesting of samples taken on Nov. 19 and Nov. 23 showed that the variant was already present in the Netherlands. WHAT WE KNOW SO FAR ABOUT THE OMICRON VARIANT "It is not yet clear whether these people had also visited southern Africa," the agency said. Initial testing of these samples showed abnormalities in the virus's spike protein. They were sent to RIVM for further analysis. The omicron variant that was first sequenced on Nov. 24 in South Africa has between 26 and 32 mutations on the spike. The discovery of the mutation in South Africa prompted several countries, including the United States, to restrict travel from countries in the southern African region. This new finding,...
    Omicron was already in the Netherlands five days before South Africa alerted the World Health Organisation about it last week, Dutch health authorities have revealed. The RIVM health institute found the mutant Covid strain in samples dating from November 19 and 23. But the WHO said South Africa first reported the the variant to the UN health agency on November 24.  A traveler from South Africa is tested for the Omicron variant upon arrival in a specially designed test lane at Schiphol airport in the Netherlands today It remains unclear where or when the variant first emerged - but that hasn't stopped wary nations from rushing to impose travel restrictions, especially on visitors coming from southern Africa.  Those moves have been criticised by South Africa and the WHO has urged against them, noting their limited effect. RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next British tourists' ski holiday chaos as Switzerland brings in... Moderna chief warns 'it will be MONTHS' before there's a... Share this article Share Much is still not known about the variant...
    The omicron Chinese coronavirus variant was present in Europe before it was identified in South Africa, Dutch health authorities revealed Tuesday. According to the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), the omicron variant was infecting the Netherlands nearly one week before the world awakened Friday to the strand experts and scientists said first originated in South Africa. The cases detected from South Africa at the Amsterdam airport were reportedly not the first time the omicron first reached Europe and other nations. Belgium and Germany also believe the variant was circulating within their counties before Friday, according to CBS News. “It is not yet clear whether the people concerned [in the earlier cases] have also been to southern Africa,” the RIVM said. “In the coming period, various studies will be conducted into the distribution of the Omicron variant in the Netherlands.” The new information casts light on just how little the so-called experts and scientists know about the coronavirus virus, much less political policies with horrific unintended consequences instituted to supposedly protect populations. Passengers walk at the Schiphol airport on November 29, 2021. Dutch health...
    Some health experts are sure that the South African Omicron variant is already in the United States, it just has not been detected yet. Dr Scott Gottlieb, former head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) told CBS News' Face the Nation that the variant likely found its way into the U.S. before flights from seven south African nations were paused. The restriction was instituted on Monday by President Biden in an effort to prevent the potentially vaccine evasive, highly infectious, variant from finding its way stateside. Omicron was first detected in South Africa last week, and has since been found in more than a dozen countries, including the UK and Canada. Dr Scott Gottlieb (pictured) believes that the Omicron COVID-19 variant is already in the U.S. and it just has not been sequenced yet Gottlieb says that since so many people are flying into America and then testing positive for the virus, it is extremely likely at least one person brought the variant with them. Another expert, Dr Chris Thompson of Loyola Chicago, agrees. The U.S. halted travel from...
    The South African province where the Omicron COVID-19 variant was first detected has suffered a more than 300 percent increase in virus related hospitalizations this week. Gauteng, which includes the city of Johannesburg, recorded 580 hospitalizations because of the virus this week, per official data - a 330 percent jump from 135 two weeks ago. Just under 40 percent of the provinces 12 million residents have received at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine - third-lowest of the nation's 12 provinces. Last week, the new Omicron variant was sequenced in 77 cases in the region, and many fear it is the most infectious strain of the virus yet and that it could evade vaccine protection because of its high number of mutations. While South African health officials have reported that cases of the variant are often mild, the increase in hospitalizations in the province seems to hint otherwise. Over the past two weeks, Covid related hospitalizations in the Gauteng province of South Africa have jumped 330% - from 135 in the week that ended on November 7 (week 45)...
    New York City is already seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations as the holiday season gets underway.  Although holiday travel and gatherings have just started and the coldest days lie ahead, the city just recorded a spike of 2.22percent in COVID-19 positive test rate - the highest since September, Bloomberg reported.  More than 100 patients were hospitalized with the virus just on Friday, marking a 25 percent spike from roughly two weeks ago.  New York City recorded 485 people hospitalized due to the virus on November 27, over 100 more than two weeks ago. City and health officials have already warned New Yorkers that the worst is yet to come as more cases are expected to be recorded after the Thanksgiving weekend, and the country grapples with the threat of the Omicron variant, which was first detected in South Africa.   On Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio confirmed that no cases of the variant have yet been recorded in the city, but said there were fears that it could spread rapidly to the city.  He reissued advice saying that all...
    JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South Africa’s rapid increase in COVID-19 cases attributed to the new omicron variant is resulting in mostly mild symptoms, doctors say. “We’ve seen a sharp increase in cases for the past 10 days. So far they have mostly been very mild cases, with patients having flu-like symptoms: dry coughs, fever, night sweats, a lot of body pains,” said Dr. Unben Pillay, a general practitioner in Gauteng province where 81% of the new cases have been reported. “Most of these patients have been treated at home,” Pillay told an online press briefing Monday. “Vaccinated people tend to do much better. We have not seen a vast increase in hospitalizations, but this is still early days. Hospitalizations often come several days after a rise in confirmed cases.” Most of the new cases in South Africa have been among people in their 20s and 30s, and doctors note that age group generally has milder symptoms of COVID-19 in any case. They warn that older people infected by the new variant could have more severe symptoms. Learning more about the omicron...
    Miss South Africa Lalela Mswane defied pressure from anti-Israel groups and even the South African government on Sunday and landed in Israel to represent her country in the Miss Universe pageant in the coastal Red Sea city of Eilat next month. “Ready as I’ll ever be! I’m so grateful for this opportunity to represent my country on the @missuniverse stage!” Mswane posted on her Instagram account upon landing in Israel on Sunday, holding her country’s flag. “South Africa! Let’s do this!”   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Miss South Africa (@official_misssa) Mswane, 24, has faced a campaign of abuse by South Africa’s aggressive anti-Israel organizations, who have sought for the last twenty years to tarnish Israel as an “apartheid” state, and to boycott it until it is dismantled, like apartheid South Africa. Lalela Mswane takes to the stage in the Miss South Africa beauty pageant in Cape Town, South Africa, Saturday Oct. 16, 2021 before winning the title. Controversy is swirling around the Miss South Africa beauty pageant, as the government has withdrawn its support...
    Earlier this week, scientists in South Africa and Botswana identified a small cluster of cases involving a new variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The high number of mutations on this variant, now officially labeled as “omicron,” generated immediate concern—especially as several of the changes involve the critical spike protein. That protein is a key part of how the virus attaches to cells in the body, and the target of both vaccines and manufactured monoclonal antibody treatments. So changes in that area could affect the virus’ rate of transmission, as well as making it more evasive to prevention and treatment. Early statistics in one region of South Africa have given preliminary indications that the rate of transmission may be very high; possibly higher than that of the delta variant, which currently makes up 99.9% of cases in the United States. It’s not clear that the variant actually appeared first in the region where it has been detected. South Africa has one of the world’s best systems of sampling and analysis—one that has experience in dealing with other epidemics, including HIV—meaning that it very quickly...
    THE new Omicron variant has caused hospitalisations in South Africa to treble in two weeks, worrying new figures reveal. The new data, taken from the NICD, showed that hospital admissions had risen from 135 to 418 over the past 14 days – confirming fears that it could be more transmissible. 4Most new South African infections have been attributed to the new variantCredit: Reuters 4Travel bans have imposed against travellers - pictured here in Johannesburg - flying out of the country amid fears over the strains transmissibilityCredit: AFP The new Omicron strain, or B.1.1.529, was first reported 13 days ago with cases reported across a number of African nations. It has 50 genetic mutations, most of which have been identified in previous variants, along with three brand-new changes. A South African doctor who treated patients with the Omicron variant reported that the symptoms were “mild” but did note that they were unusual. And aftter cases were detected in 14 different nations - including Britain - it was quickly dubbed as a "variant of concern" by the World Health Organization - sparked...
    SOUTH Africa’s Covid cases are expected to top 10,000 per day by the end of this week due to the super strain Omicron, a leading epidemiologist has said. It would mean the nation has seen a surge in cases of 9,900 per cent in the space of just three weeks, instilling fear into the rest of the world. 1Covid cases over the past two weeks in South Africa. One of the countries epidemiologists, Dr Salim Abdool Karim, says he expects cases to reach 10,000 by the end of this week Officials are working to stall the seeding of Omicron in other nations, with border closures and quarantine rules. But already it has popped up in a dozen countries, as expected, including in the UK where nine cases have been detected. The variant is thought to be faster spreading than Delta - which is currently the most dominant strain globally. It may also evade immunity from prior infection or vaccination, making more people susceptible to infection. In South Africa, the Omicron epicentre, cases have already soared several-fold since the alarm was...
    LONDON — Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said there is evidence of local transmission of the new omicron variant of the coronavirus after the country reported its first six cases. She told a news conference that not all the cases in Scotland had links to recent travel, adding that this suggests “there might already be some community transmission of this variant in Scotland.” The new cases takes the U.K.’s total to nine after three cases were identified in England over the weekend. The arrival of the variant on British shores prompted Prime Minister Boris Johnson to tighten restrictions on mask-wearing and testing of international arrivals to England. ___ MORE ON THE PANDEMIC: — 13 omicron cases discovered in Portuguese soccer club — AP explains what is known and not known about the new COVID-19 variant — Merriam-Webster chooses vaccine as the 2021 word of the year — Why WHO skipped ‘nu,’ ‘xi’ for new COVID variant — See all of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic ___ ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s planning minister said a big vaccination campaign against coronavirus will be...
    Portuguese health authorities said Monday they have identified 13 cases of omicron, the new coronavirus variant believed to be more contagious, among team members of a professional soccer club. The Ricardo Jorge National Health Institute said Monday that one of those who tested positive at the Lisbon-based Belenenses soccer club had recently traveled to South Africa, where the omicron variant was first identified. The others, however, had not traveled to South Africa, indicating that this may be one of the very first cases of local transmission of the virus outside of southern Africa. OMICRON VARIANT POSES ‘VERY HIGH’ GLOBAL RISK, ‘UNPRECEDENTED NUMBER OF SPIKE MUTATIONS’: WHO A flight crew walk through the terminal at Sydney Airport, Monday, Nov. 29, 2021. (AP Photo/Mark Baker) Those who have been in contact with the positive cases have been ordered to isolate, regardless of their vaccination status or their exposure to possible contagion, and will be regularly tested for COVID-19, the institute said. As cases of a new coronavirus variant are confirmed around the world, Japan announced Monday that it will suspend...
    DUTCH police said they had arrested a married couple who left a Covid quarantine hotel and were attempting to flee the country. They were detained yesterday on a plane in Amsterdam's Schiphol airport just before it departed for Spain. 1The arrests were made on a plane in Amsterdam's Schiphol airport just before it departed to Spain The drama came after Dutch authorities said that 61 people who arrived on two flights at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport on Friday had tested positive for the coronavirus. Thirteen of them had the new Omicron variant. One of the members of the couple had tested positive for Covid-19 and went into isolation, while the other person was negative but in quarantine, according to Public health authority spokeswoman Stefanie . She added that both were back in isolation, but not at the same hotel. They are a Spanish man, 30 and a Portuguese woman, aged 28, Ms van Waardenburg said: "The arrests took place in a plane that was about to take off. They were on a plane that was about to depart for Spain at...
    Two cases of the new variant Omicron have been confirmed in Canada, government officials announced on Sunday. 'Today, the province of Ontario has confirmed two cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in Ottawa, both of which were reported in individuals with recent travel from Nigeria,' said Christine Elliott, deputy premier and minister of health, and Dr. Kieran Moore, chief medical officer of health.  'Ottawa Public Health is conducting case and contact management and the patients are in isolation.'  Scientists have said they are concerned about the B.1.1.529 variant, named by the World Health Organisation as Omicron, as it has around 30 different mutations - double the amount present in the Delta variant. It was first discovered in South Africa earlier this month Canada, like the U.S., has banned travel from South Africa - which has the largest number of cases - and seven regional countries. But Nigeria is not one of the countries on the banned list. Eric Feigel-Ding, an epidemiologist, told DailyMail.com on Friday that he believed the new variant was 'probably worldwide' already. A patient in Belgium...
    PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — The overcast, drizzly skies match the somber mood at the Tshwane University of Technology, a hot spot in South Africa’s latest surge of COVID-19 cases, apparently driven by the new omicron variant that is leading countries around the world to impose new restrictions. After several students tested positive, the university postponed some exams, and officials in the larger metropolitan area of Tshwane, which includes the capital of Pretoria, are pushing vaccinations, especially among younger adults who have been slow to get the shots. At TUT, as the university is known, few students wanted to speak about the new variant that has cast a pall. Many were not vaccinated — only 22% of 18- to 34-year-olds in South Africa are — and some seemed to be rethinking that, though notably the university’s vaccination center was closed for the weekend. Manqoba Zitha, a student who has gotten the shot, said he will be pushing fellow classmates to do the same. “I’m trying to encourage them so that they can vaccinate, so they can stay away from coronavirus...
    CARDIFF Rugby team are stranded in South Africa amid an outbreak of the Omicron variant. Players have been forced to isolate in their hotel after two people within the group tested positive for Covid. 1Cardiff Rugby team are having to isolate in a hotel in South Africa after two people tested positive for CovidCredit: Huw Evans At least one is suspected to be the new super-strain, Omicron. "Cardiff Rugby have been unable to depart South Africa following two positive cases of Covid-19, one of which is suspected to be the new variant Omicron," the team said in a statement. "The travelling party had hoped to depart Cape Town this afternoon after a charter plane was secured, however PCR tests undertaken last night have returned two positive results. "As a consequence of one of these results suspected of being Omicron, the entire travelling party have returned to their hotel to isolate. "Cardiff Rugby continue to work with the South African Rugby Union, the Welsh Rugby Union and public health authorities both at home and abroad to decide the next course of...
    THE HAGUE, Netherlands -- The Dutch public health authority confirmed Sunday that 13 people who arrived in the Netherlands on flights from South Africa on Friday have so far tested positive for the new omicron coronavirus variant.The 61 people who tested positive for the virus on Friday after arriving on the last two flights to Amsterdam's Schiphol airport before a flight ban was put in place were immediately put into isolation while sequencing was carried out to establish if they had the new variant.The public health institute said in a statement that testing was continuing on the samples.Most of the 61 people who tested positive were put into isolation at a hotel near the airport, while a small number were allowed to sit out their quarantine at home under strict conditions.Health authorities appealed to all travelers who returned from southern Africa in the past week to get tested, and set up a test center at Schiphol Airport for Dutch citizens returning from the region. The tests are voluntary, and travelers can wait for the results in isolation at home.THIS IS...
    AT least thirteen people have tested positive for the new Omicron Covid variant after landing in Amsterdam on a flight from South Africa. Dutch health authorities have confirmed 61 passengers are quarantining as they are infected with the coronavirus - with at least 13 cases of the new super strain. 5Dozens of passengers aboard flights from South Africa to Amsterdam have tested positive for CovidCredit: AP 5The Red Cross took those infected into quarantine last nightCredit: EPA "The Omicron variant has so far been identified in 13 of the positive tests. The investigation has not yet been completed. The new variant may be found in more test samples," the National Institute for Public Health (RIVM) said in a statement. The passengers were among 600 to arrive at Schiphol Airport on two KLM flights on Friday. It comes after the mutant strains reportedly arrived in Germany. Health chiefs say it's overwhelmingly likely that "very high risk" Omicron is in Germany already after a traveller tested positive for a mutated form of the deadly bug. Fears are intensifying over...
    Dutch authorities said Saturday they believe omicron cases are among 61 passengers on two flights from South Africa who tested positive for COVID-19 Friday. The passengers who tested positive are being isolated as authorities conduct further investigation into the cases, some of which they say are likely the highly transmissible new variant that originated in South Africa. More than 500 other passengers on the flights from Cape Town and Johannesburg into Amsterdam have tested negative and were allowed to return home or continue traveling. Those who returned home in the Netherlands were instructed to self-isolate for five days in case of an incubation period. "In a number of the tested persons the omicron variant is presumed to have been found," the Netherlands Institute for Health (RIVM) said in a statement to Reuters . PFIZER AND BIONTECH: VACCINE AGAINST NEW COVID-19 STRAIN CAN BE PRODUCED IN 100 DAYS An RIVM spokesperson added it was "almost certain" the cases were of the new variant, but further testing was needed in order to confirm it. A spokesperson...
    The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that no cases of the new omicron variant of COVID-19 have been identified in the country as of Friday night. The agency said it was following details on the new variant, which was first reported in South Africa and is feared to be more infectious than previous variants. The CDC classified omicron as a 'variant of concern.'  'We are grateful to the South African government and its scientist who have openly communicated with the global scientific community and continue to share information about this variant with the US Department of Health and Human Services and CDC,' the CDC said in a statement. 'We are working with other US and global public health and industry partners to learn more about this variant, as we continue to monitor its path.' The agency added that omicron would be 'identified quickly' if it appears in the US as the virus has popped up in several European countries, Israel, Hong Kong and Australia.  The CDC's statement comes as Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US top health expert, said he...
    The omicron variant is already having an effect on the sports world, about 21 months after games and events were put on pause when the coronavirus pandemic first exploded. Golf, cricket and rugby were the first major international sports to be affected by the new COVID-19 variant. Several European golfers withdrew from a DP World Tour tournament in Johannesburg, South Africa, while rugby games were postponed and the Dutch cricket team decided to defer their series against a South African team. CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM People lineup to get on an overseas flight at OR Tambo’s airport in Johannesburg, South Africa’, Friday Nov. 26, 2021. A slew of nations moved to stop air travel from southern Africa on Friday in reaction to news of a new, potentially more transmissible COVID-19 variant that has been detected in South Africa. Scientists say  it is a concern because of its high number of mutations and rapid spread among young people in Gauteng, the country’s most populous province. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay) British golfers withdrew from the Joburg Open after...
    SAN JOSE (KPIX) — President Biden joined other countries in restricting travel from the South Africa region where a new “concerning” coronavirus variant has been detected. The new restrictions take effect on Monday. The World Health Organization says the “omicron” variant, which has been spreading in South Africa, is “a highly transmissible variant of concern.” READ MORE: COVID: Highly Contagious Omicron Variant Prompts New Travel RestrictionsWhile no cases have been discovered in the United States, University of California San Francisco professor of medicine Dr. Peter Chin-Hong believes the variant is already here. “Yes, the variant is probably already here in the U.S., there’s lots of travel between South Africa and the U.S.,” Dr. Chin-Hong said. Health experts say it’s still too early to tell whether the omicron variant can cause severe illness or if the vaccines work against it. Dr. Chin-Hong said the variant’s concerning features are found on its spike proteins. “There are about 30 mutations in the spike protein and about ten mutations on the end of the spike protein, which allows the virus to attach to the...
    The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Friday night that no cases of the omicron COVID-19 variant have been identified in the U.S. to date.  In a statement, the agency wrote that it was following the details of the new B.1.1.529 variant, which was first reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by South Africa and classified as a "variant of concern" by the organization on Friday. "We are grateful to the South African government and its scientists who have openly communicated with the global scientific community and continue to share information  about this variant  with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and CDC.," the CDC said.  OMICRON CORONAVIRUS VARIANT IDENTIFIED IN SOUTH AFRICA PROMPTS TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS: LIVE UPDATES "We are working with other U.S. and global public health and industry partners to learn more about this variant, as we continue to monitor its path," it wrote.  The CDC noted that it is continuously monitoring variants and that the U.S. variant surveillance system has reliably detected new variants in the U.S.  "We expect omicron to be identified quickly, if it emerges in the...
    NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There is growing concern over a new COVID-19 variant that could spread faster, and may put vaccines to the test. Those fears have already led to widespread travel restrictions, CBS2’s Kevin Rincon reported Friday. READ MORE: U.S. To Restrict Travel From South Africa, 7 Other Countries Over New COVID Variant 'Omicron'The new variant called “Omicron” originated in South Africa. It has roughly 50 mutations, including 30 on the spike protein, health officials said. “This strain has the most mutations that we’ve seen out of any other variant. We don’t really want that to change too much where the vaccine is no longer efficacious,” said Dr. Purvi Parikh, an immunologist at NYU Langone Health. Parikh said even though it started halfway around the globe, it’s very much a concern for us here at home. “An outbreak anywhere is an outbreak everywhere,” Parikh said. COVID VACCINE New York State book online here or call 1-833-NYS-4-VAX New York City book online here or call 877-VAX-4NYC Track NYC vaccinations by zip code Nassau County more info here Suffolk County more info here Westchester County more info here...
    Joe Biden on Friday announced a ban on travel from eight southern African countries in response to a new COVID variant - hours after his chief scientific advisor suggested the move was unlikely, and despite Biden himself declaring last year that 'banning travel will not stop it'. The president, in Nantucket for a Thanksgiving break with his family, said travel will be banned from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique, and Malawi. U.S. citizens and green card holders will still be able to travel into the U.S. from the banned countries, but no one else will be allowed. Biden's decision came after the UK and Israel on Thursday halted travel, and the EU followed suit. President Biden spoke with reporters today outside The Nantucket Tap Room where he said he decided on the ban out of an abundance of caution. He is Nantucket celebrating Thanksgiving with his family President Joe Biden on Friday banned travel from eight African countries - shaded red in the map. South Africa is the only one to have direct flights to the United...
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The race to stop the spread of another COVID-19 variant. “We don’t know a lot about the variant except that it is of great concern it seems to spread rapidly,” said President Biden. READ MORE: Shoppers Across Maryland Return To Stores For Black Friday As Retailers Face Supply, Staffing ChallengesThe new variant Omicron was first reported in South Africa on Wednesday is mutating quickly. Health experts fear it could be more transmissible than the Delta variant. “It is something that has emerged in South Africa and is spreading at a reasonably rapid rate,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci. It prompted countries around the world to impose travel restrictions Friday. The United States did the same based on advice from the CDC. “There’s no travel to and from South Africa and six other countries except for American citizens who are able to come back,” said President Biden. READ MORE: Catonsville Carpenter Moonlights As Santa's Helper, Writing Back To Hopeful ChildrenThe World Health Organization met Friday to discuss Omicron classifying it as a “variant of concern.” “This variant has a...
    The governor of New York has canceled elective surgeries in preparation for an expected surge in COVID-19 cases, as the US bans flights from eight Southern African countries to try and prevent the new variant, Omicron, from arriving. Kathy Hochul on Friday said that all non-urgent procedures would be postponed. Hours earlier, Joe Biden confirmed that travel from South Africa and seven other countries in the region had been halted.  The new variant was first found in Botswana and has since moved to South Africa, where it is spreading rapidly through six provinces. It has also been found in Hong Kong, Israel and Belgium. 
    Getty Images/Naohiko Hatta The World Health Organization announced Friday it was naming a new Covid-19 variant “Omicron,” skipping over a politically sensitive letter of the Greek alphabet. The WHO made the announcement about the B.1.1.529 variant out of Johannesburg, South Africa, passing over a letter many observers presumed would be next — “Nu” — as well as the subsequent letter, “Xi,” which composes part of Chinese leader Xi Jinping‘s name. The virus joins earlier variants named for letters of the alphabet, including the Alpha variant out of the United Kingdom; the Beta variant out of South Africa; the Gamma variant out of Brazil; and the Delta variant out of India. Additional variants include Epsilon, Zeta, Eta, Theta, Iota, Kappa, Lambda, and Mu. It’s Omicron, apparently. Did they skip Nu and Xi? pic.twitter.com/GEUTADZl3y — Aaron Astor (@AstorAaron) November 26, 2021 To date, “Nu” and “Xi” are the only letters the WHO has opted against using. Officials didn’t provide an explanation, though the organization has been famously sensitive about expressing deference toward China, where Covid-19 began the province of Wuhan....
    NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — New York Gov. Kathy Hochul says there are no known cases of the new COVID variant “Omicron” in New York, but health officials are monitoring the situation. “The Department of Health’s Wadsworth Center Laboratory will continue to actively monitor COVID-19 virus samples selected from throughout New York State to compare sequences and identify circulating and new variants,” Hochul said in a statement Friday. “While we have not yet identified any Omicron cases, we are not surprised that new variants are emerging and may likely end up in New York. We will continue to monitor WHO actions and work with our partners at the CDC to keep a close eye on developments.” READ MORE: U.S. To Restrict Travel From South Africa, 7 Other Countries Over New COVID Variant 'Omicron'The governor’s statement came shortly before President Joe Biden announced the U.S. will restrict travel from South Africa and seven other countries over the variant concerns. READ MORE: NYPD: Landlord-Tenant Dispute Suspected In Canarsie Fire That Seriously Injured 2“This morning I was briefed by my chief medical advisor, Dr....
    Manufacturers of Americas most used vaccines are saying that they can quickly respond to challenges presented by the South African Nu variant. The recently emerged variant is believed to be the most infectious yet, and some fear it could evade protection provided but the current crop of COVID-19 vaccines. Pfizer, BioNTech and Moderna, who are responsible for producing the two most common vaccines in the U.S., have all said they can quickly update the vaccines to provide protection against the emerging variant, if necessary. While the variant is yet to have been detected in the United States, it has appeared in multiple countries in Africa and Europe, keeping American officials on high alert. CNBC's Meg Tirell (pictured) reports that Pfizer and Moderna both are taking action to potentially update their COVID-19 vaccines if need be in wake of the newly discovered South African virus strain The new strain has over 30 mutations, it what has been described as a 'constellation' by some 'Moderna and BioNTech and Pfizer tell us that they are already looking at this very closely and have...
    By MARIA CHENG LONDON (AP) — South African scientists identified a new version of the coronavirus this week that they say is behind a recent spike in COVID-19 infections in Gauteng, the country’s most populous province. It’s unclear where the new variant actually arose, but it was first detected by scientists in South Africa and has now been seen in travelers to Belgium, Botswana, Hong Kong and Israel. Health Minister Joe Phaahla said the variant was linked to an “exponential rise” of cases in the last few days, although experts are still trying to determine if the new variant, named B.1.1.529, is actually responsible. From just over 200 new confirmed cases per day in recent weeks, South Africa saw the number of new daily cases rocket to 2,465 on Thursday. Struggling to explain the sudden rise in cases, scientists studied virus samples from the outbreak and discovered the new variant. On Friday, the World Health Organization was convening a group of experts to assess the data from South Africa. WHY ARE SCIENTISTS WORRIED ABOUT THIS NEW VARIANT? It appears to have...
    World Health Organization (W.H.O.) officials will meet Friday to address concerns regarding the latest coronavirus variant on the rise in South Africa. As of now, the variant is named B.1.1.529, but the W.H.O.’s technical working group will discuss whether B.1.1.529 should be assigned a name from the Greek alphabet, according to Fortune. If so, the variant will be most likely be named “Nu.” The variant was first discovered in Botswana and has been making its way through South Africa, including Johannesburg, NPR reports, citing the Guardian. During an online press briefing on Thursday, South African Health Minister Joe Phaahla announced that the country had seen a substantial rise in infections, per the Associated Press. “Over the last four or five days, there has been more of an exponential rise,” he stated and added that B.1.1.529 seems to be the catalyst for the spike.  South Africa had been reporting just over 200 new cases a day for a stretch before the new variant came to light, per the Associated Press. In the past week, new daily cases have soared. On Wednesday, the country...
    By RAF CASERT BRUSSELS (AP) — The discovery of a new coronavirus variant sent a chill through much of the world Friday as nations raced to halt air travel, markets fell sharply and scientists held emergency meetings to weigh the exact risks, which were largely unknown. Medical experts, including the World Health Organization, warned against any overreaction before the variant that originated in southern Africa was better understood. But a jittery world feared the worst nearly two years after COVID-19 emerged and triggered a pandemic that has killed more than 5 million people around the globe. British Health Secretary Sajid Javid told lawmakers that the newest variant may be more transmissible than the delta variant and render vaccines less effective. “We must move quickly and at the earliest possible moment,” Javid said. There was no immediate indication that the variant causes more severe disease. As with other variants, some infected people display no symptoms, South African experts said. Even though some of the genetic changes appear worrisome, it was unclear if the new variant would pose a significant public health...