The Omicron subvariant is CoViD’s most transmissible version to date.


Article by Stacie Hart, Human Resources / Recruitment Analyst



We’re all extremely tired of this smart, stubborn virus and all of its various strains.  Every time we feel like it’s safe to put CoViD behind us and move on, it seems another subvariant has popped up.  This time, it’s called:  BA.5.


Unfortunately, this subvariant of Omicron is the most transmissible version to date.  While numbers of new infections are now lower than the Omicron wave of this past winter, hospitalizations have almost doubled between May 2022 and the present date.  Despite this, according to a recent poll conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, six in 10 adults believe the worst of the pandemic is in the past.




Common symptoms of this newest variant include runny nose, sore throat, persistent cough, and fatigue.  Because of the fact that this particular subvariant (as well as its immediate predecessor, BA.4) tends to avoid the lungs and stay in the nasal passages, doctors have indicated the availability of a nasal vaccine could be in our futures.


Scientists are also currently at work on a BA.5-specific booster.  In the meantime, this current surge serves as a reminder to take precautions to avoid illness, slow or stop the cycle of new variants, and minimize disruption to our daily lives.



People who were previously infected with one or more subvariants of CoViD are falling victim to BA.5, which now accounts for approximately 65% of all coronavirus infections in the U.S.  According to Andy Pekosz, a virologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, BA.5 is “maximized to evade immunity” so, it’s even sneakier than previous variants.  Reinfections are on the rise, and medical experts tell us that with each infection, even an asymptomatic one, we are at risk of developing serious complications.  These can include heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and long-term cognitive impairment.



Luckily, everyone over age 50, as well as those with certain health conditions, are currently eligible to get a second booster to combat the possibility of contracting BA.5.  Updated boosters, specific to this subvariant, are expected to be available in September 2022.



Click HERE to access the most-current CoViD information for our area.





Morse, Brit, 2022.  Plotting Your Return to the Office?  Here’s Your Workplace Guide to the New BA.5 Covid Subvariant.

Uncited author, 2022.  BA.5:  Common Symptoms and More Information About the Omicron Subvariant.

Agins, Michelle V., 2022.  How to Live With Covid When You Are Tired of Living With Covid.  New York Times.

Nania, Rachel, 2022.  5 Reasons to Beware the BA.5 Omicron Subvariant.

Uncited author, 2022.  Updated COVID boosters for Omicron BA.5 variant expected in September.



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