Omicron variant of COVID-19 detected in the ACT, case has not travelled overseas

ACT Health has confirmed an Omicron COVID-19 infection in the territory, in an individual who has not travelled overseas.Key points:Genomic sequencing has confirmed one case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant in CanberraOmicron has been declared a ‘variant of concern’ by the World Health OrganisationIt is not yet known how contagious the Omicron variant is compared to the Delta variantThe person is fully vaccinated and returned a positive COVID-19 test on Wednesday December 1.Following genome sequencing, the case was today confirmed as the Omicron variant.It is not yet known if the case was acquired in the ACT or NSW.Four new cases of COVID-19 were also recorded in the ACT today.Four people are in hospital in Canberra as a result of the virus, including three people in ICU, but none require ventilation.Almost 98 per cent of Canberrans aged 12 and over are now fully vaccinated.All known exposure sites linked to the new Omicron case have been listed as casual.They are:Next Gen Canberra indoor pool, November 29 from 5:15pm to 6:45pmThe Knox Made in Watson on November 30 from 9am to 10amSupabarn Kingston on November 30 from 4:20pm to 4:50pmAn end of year celebration at the Blue Gum Community School on November 30 from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.Anybody who attended an exposure location at the specified time and date must fill out an ACT Contact Declaration Form and get tested.Omicron spread concerns in NSW The Omicron variant first appeared in southern Africa, but has now made its way into the ACT.(Supplied: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)Omicron has been declared a variant of concern by the World Health Organization.It is not yet known how infectious the Omicron variant is, but it has been reported to have less severe symptoms than the Delta variant.First discovered in southern Africa, it has now been detected in more than two dozen countries.Health authorities in NSW fear Omicron is spreading in the community, after a COVID-19 cluster at a western Sydney school grew to 13 cases.The ACT came out of a nine-week lockdown on October 15, after a single case of the Delta variant prompted increased COVID-19 restrictions.Since November 12, almost all remaining COVID-19 restrictions in the national capital have eased, with a mask mandate removed for the majority of settings and nightclubs allowed to reopen.What you need to know about coronavirus:Loading form…

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