JACKSON, Miss — The first case of the omicron variant of COVID-19 was found in Mississippi on Monday, according to the Mississippi State Department of Health.
The case is in a fully vaccinated person who recently went to New York and health officials said they weren't hospitalized.
The Magnolia State joins 17 other states (California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Utah, Wisconsin, and Washington) that have reported cases of the variant.
“We were prepared for the appearance of this variant in Mississippi, and we need to remember that Delta is still a very active variant of COVID-19 currently in the state, as well,” said MSDH State Health Officer, Dr. Thomas Dobbs.
While information on the infection rate and severity of the Omicron variant is still unknown, Dobbs said the best way to be protected at this point is to get vaccinated.
“Vaccines remain the best public health measure to protect people from COVID-19, slow the transmission rate, and reduce the likelihood of new variants emerging. COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalizations, and death,” Dobbs said.
According to the health department, there have been minimal increases in the number of COVID patients in the hospital, in the ICU, and on ventilators.
Vaccinations for all Mississippians 5 and up can be found from healthcare providers, FQHCs, independent and retail pharmacies, and county health departments.
To schedule an appointment with a county health department, click here or call the COVID-19 hotline at 866-498-4948 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week.