Oh Noooooo!! Omicron Variant coronavirus coming for us!!!
Before we can catch our breath from the last crisis, the new Omicron Variant that causes a mild form of Covid-19 shows up.
Right along with it come the hysterics–full doses of it injected into the public consciousness by that part of the media looking for the next new thing to scare the bejabbers out of us.
Zeynep Tufekci fires a warning flare in a New York Times op-ed: “Omicron Is Coming. The U.S. Must Act Now.” Richard Pérez-Peña and Jason Horowitz on the paper’s news side report, “New ‘Variant of Concern’ Fuels Global Fear of Another Virus Surge: … its many mutations set off alarms, lowering hopes of putting the pandemic in the past.”
I turned on CNN this morning, and was exposed to a feverish report about the first case! of the Omicron Variant arriving in Japan!!
“‘It’s Coming’: NY Declares State of Emergency Ahead of Potential Omicron Spike,” reports NBC News in New York. The “emergency” would allow, among other past horrors, the state to limit “non-essential” and non-urgent procedures at hospital.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul ominously warned before a single case arrived, “We continue to see warning signs of spikes this upcoming winter, and while the new Omicron variant has yet to be detected in New York State, it’s coming,” Hochul said.
Which leads to the familiar cry: Somebody…
Pause. Steady there. Grab a seat and a glass of water. Deep breathe.
Never mind that the first clinical contacts reveal a variation that is perhaps more contagious but less serious than previous variations. Reported the Telegraph:
South African doctor who raised alarm about omicron variant says symptoms are ‘unusual but mild’.
Dr Angelique Coetzee said she was first alerted to the possibility of a new variant when patients in her busy private practice in the capital Pretoria started to come in earlier this month with Covid-19 symptoms that did not make immediate sense.
They included young people of different backgrounds and ethnicities with intense fatigue and a six-year-old child with a very high pulse rate, she said. None suffered from a loss of taste or smell.
“Their symptoms were so different and so mild from those I had treated before,” said Dr Coetzee, a GP for 33 years who chairs the South African Medical Association alongside running her practice.
The emphasis should be on the minor symptoms and the many patients who are being treated at home. Is it possible that this milder variant, because it is so contagious, will squeeze out the other, more serious variants?
Here is the obligatory caution: So many unanswered questions, so much more research required.
But Coetzee’s findings must not be ignored because they are “anecdotal.” As we should have learned for the pandemic’s initial spread, the observations made by individual clinicians must no longer be cast aside, ignored or condemned because they aren’t the subject of extensive testing.
President Joe Biden, thank God, finally got something right when he said the appearance of the Omicron Variation is a matter of concern, but not of panic.
I’d add the kind of panic that led to vast and destruction overreaction: The shutdown of an entire national economy based on a proposition or hypothesis. To take the ramblings of the likes of Anthony Fauci as the final,, unchallengeable word has had caused unemployment, business failure, closed classrooms, supply shortages, heartbreak and more.
Footnote: Fauci claimed that a disagreement (he called it a personal attack) on him is an attack on science. Such a stunning, arrogant and false assertion would and should never be made by scientists, researchers, engineers and others. His assertion is more than anything else a screeching warning that an authoritarian personality is in charge of the nation’s health policy.Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.