LAFAYETTE, LA (KADN)- The omicron variant is the latest strain of the coronavirus to be designated a "variant of concern" by the centers for disease control and prevention and as more and more cases are being reported around the world which has many people wondering is the vaccine is still effective. Reports of the omicron variant have been found here in the united states but it's still unclear if the highly mutated variant is more transmissible or better able to evade vaccines.
"It is spreading faster in places where delta and other variants are going away we don't know if that because more escape from immunity or because its more transmissible we can not know that yet".
The first person in the u.s. who tested positive for omicron was a fully vaccinated traveler which now has many wondering if the vaccines are still effective and Dr. Britni Hebert has the answer.
She says "Vaccines remain extremely important for protection against all variants of covid and boosters are now a lot more important for all adults".
Along with encouraging more people to get vaccinated President Joe Biden plans to extend the transportation mask mandate on trains, planes, airports, and buses.
Governor John Bel Edwards held a press conference addressing this new variant.
He says "I want to make sure you're aware we haven't yet detected it in Louisiana that certainly doesn't mean it isn't here but we know that it's in New York, Hawaii, Colorado, California, and Minnesota. I also want to be clear that as soon as we do if we do then we will make sure that you all know it that the people of Louisiana know as much about that as possible."
For more updates on covid cases here in Louisiana, you can visit ldh.la.gov.