CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — We have gone through the Greek Alphabet when it comes to COVID-19 variants, now coming to the omicron variant.
Some got vaccinated at La Palmera Mall on Thursday to try and go back to normal, though a “new normal” might be the way to put it.
“I got vaccinated today because I’m tired of these masks already and I just want everything to get back to normal,” Viviana Ita said.
Now with the first confirmed case of the omicron COVID-19 variant found in Houston, Texas, people are gearing up for the holiday season by going to the mall and not just getting gifts, but getting vaccinated.
“I just wanted to protect those around me,” Madison Longoria said.
However, the CDC posted on their website that even fully vaccinated people can likely get the omicron variant. The CDC said the omicron variant is also likely to spread easier than the original COVID variant.
Corpus Christi Nueces County public health director Annette Rodriguez said the county is about 52% fully vaccinated, with the 65 and older population being vaccinated at around 80%. Rodriguez said even vaccinated people in other parts of the U.S. are at risk.
“People that are getting the omicron are getting it and they’ve been vaccinated which there is some vaccine escape of immunity,” she said.
Rodriguez said the county is working on getting vaccines that will protect against the omicron variant.
“Transmissibility does not mean severity,” she said when asked whether faster transmissibility means someone will get more sick.
The CDC said they are not sure if the omicron variant spreads faster than the delta variant.
“There haven’t been any other variants with this many mutations, nothing even close to this many mutations as omicron,” Chris Bird, an associate professor of evolution and computation biology at TAMUCC said.
However, when asked whether the vaccine will help against the different variants like omicron, Bird said,
“MRNA vaccines, the ones made by Modern and Phizer, they are easily updatable and Modern has already reported that they will make a new formulation that will address the Omicron variant directly.”
Bird said even with the vaccines this year rather than last year when it wasn’t available to the general public, he still expects COVID cases to rise in the Winter like they did last year.