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Are Americans Going To Care About The Next Covid-19 Wave?

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Are Americans Going To Care About The Next Covid-19 Wave?

As the Omicron subvariant BA.2 spreads in the United States, a new wave of Covid-19 may soon arrive. But since many Americans have adopted a more nonchalant approach to the pandemic, the next surge may be more of a “so what?” wave.

Is a new Covid-19 wave on its way?

Recently, Covid-19 cases spiked in Europe, driven by the highly transmissible subvariant BA.2. This subvariant is 30% more contagious than the original BA.1 omicron, although it doesn’t cause a more severe disease.

According to CDC estimates, BA.2 is now responsible for 72% of all Coronavirus infections in the United States. This is higher than the proportion at which it began causing Covid-19 cases to rise elsewhere.

Must Read: Thailand’s First Report of COVID Variant Omicron XJ

At 50 to 60 percent BA.2, you see more cases, said Sam Scarpino, managing director of pathogen surveillance at the Rockefeller Foundation.

Covid-19 cases in the United States have remained steady over the last two weeks, declining by about 1%, according to the New York Times.

“It has not taken off,” said epidemiologist Michael Osterholm from the University of Minnesota.

Experts say that high vaccination rates, along with natural immunity, may protect Americans from a rise in cases. While the United States has a lower overall vaccination rate than Western Europe, many U.S. communities have higher levels of natural immunity.

Why BA.2 may become the ‘so what’ wave

Despite the potential for a new Covid-19 wave, Americans have begun to adopt a more nonchalant attitude toward the pandemic, meaning “the next wave may be less of a BA.2 wave, and more of a so what? wave,” according to The Atlantic.

Only 25% of Americans said they were extremely or very concerned about getting infected by the Coronavirus. Covid-19 was not a concern to 43% of respondents.

People are also taking fewer pandemic precautions now. In the poll, less than half of respondents said they avoided unnecessary travel, stayed away from large groups, and wore a face mask outside of their homes, and just a third said they avoided other people as much as possible.

Experts have also expressed concerns that the United States will not be ready for a potential new wave, particularly as public health efforts and data reporting are reduced.

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