Collins Says More Time Needed To Study New COVID-19 Variant

A petrol attendant stands next to a newspaper headline in Pretoria, South Africa, Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021. As the world grapples with the emergence of the new variant of COVID-19, scientists in South Africa — where omicron was first identified — are scrambling to combat its spread across the country. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell)

National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins says there is no evidence to suggest the new Omicron variant is any more deadly than the other forms of the coronavirus.

Appearing on CNN’s State of the Nation, Dr. Collins said it will take two to three weeks to study its effects in South Africa. The NIH director called the appearance of a new variant an opportunity to “redouble” efforts to fight the pandemic.

Dr. Collins noted boosters worked particularly well against other COVID variants and he urged all eligible adults to get their booster shots.

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