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Exodus for the holidays in the United States despite the advance of Omicron

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With 171,000 daily cases on average over seven days, according to the Covid Act Now site, the wave due to Omicron, already largely dominant among new infections, is about to exceed the peak of that due to the Delta variant.

Although policies and restrictions vary from state to state, President Joe Biden set the tone on Tuesday by urging his compatriots not to don’t panic and, thanks to vaccines and tests, to celebrate Christmas with their loved ones as planned – however avoiding too large gatherings.

As a result, traditional trips to join the family, often across the country, are in full swing.

According to estimates by the American Automobile Association, more than 109 million people were expected to leave their immediate area by plane, train or car between December 23 and January 2, an increase of 34% from last year .

For example, the airline American Airlines had planned 5,300 flights Thursday, as many as the two previous days.% of our flight schedule for the same period of 2019 “,” text “:” This represents 86% of our flight schedule for the same period of 2019 “}} ‘>This represents 86% of our flight schedule for the same period of 2019, during the last holiday season before COVID-19 came at length to obstruct most of the travel, the company said.

But the spread of Omicron, including among airline crews, could complicate plans for many passengers.

United Airlines thus indicated to theFrance Media Agency that it was canceling about 120 flights on Friday.

The peak of Omicron cases across the country this week has had a direct impact on our crews and the people who run our operations, explained the company, which said it was making efforts to find solutions for the affected passengers to leave as planned.

Delta Air Lines also canceled 90 flights, ensuring have exhausted all options and resources and Alaska Airlines, whose employees reported have been potentially exposed to the virus, 17 flights.

More vaccines and screening

The movements of travelers are accompanied by a vaccination rate that seems to be on the rise, especially for booster doses of which 1.3 million were inoculated over 24 hours according to the latest figures made public on Wednesday.

The best gift you can give yourself is a booster who protects much better against severe forms of the disease, tweeted Cyrus Shahpar, White House official for COVID-19 data.

In addition to this thrill on the vaccine side, it is a real rush on test sites and self-screening kits that we have seen in recent days.

Joe Biden, surrounded by two Christmas trees and decorations and in front of a flag, speaks in front of a lectern.

President Joe Biden set the tone on Tuesday by urging his compatriots not to “panic” and, thanks to vaccines and tests, to celebrate Christmas with their loved ones as planned – however avoiding too large gatherings.

Photo: Associated Press / Patrick Semansky

In the New York neighborhood of Queens, where the federal government has opened three new sites, Gabriel Arevalo explains wanting to make sure it is negative before the holidays.

Even though I’m vaccinated I know you can still carry the virus, so I just try to make sure that I don’t unnecessarily expose other people, especially now, during holidays and in the winter. , where we are all on top of each other.

A quote from Gabriel Arevalo

Overall, the American authorities hope that the vaccine-test-mask policy will be enough to pass the course without increasing the new restrictions.

New York City Hall confirmed on Thursday that the traditional New Year’s party in Times Square would take place, even if it imposed reduced capacities and the wearing of a compulsory mask.

To deal with the new wave, Washington is also now counting on two pills against COVID-19.

The day after the authorization of that developed by the laboratory Pfizer, the United States Medicines Agency (FDA) gave the green light Thursday to the pill from Merck, intended for adults at high risk.

And in case the Omicron wave does overwhelm the US hospital system anyway, the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC), the main US health agency, on Thursday relaxed their guidelines for isolating patients. caregivers infected with COVID-19.

The latter will be able, if they are asymptomatic, to return to work after seven days of quarantine – against ten days previously – and obtaining a negative test. This isolation time can be shortened in the event of staff shortages., even specify the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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