A new subvariant of the omicron variant of COVID-19 called BA.2 was discovered in the United States and several other countries earlier this year.
BA.2 has been spreading more internationally but is not widespread in the U.S. despite it being a “variant of concern” and present in all 50 states.
According to the latest statewide data that is available, BA.2 cases in New Jersey made up 7% of coronavirus cases from Feb. 6-12.
In the U.S., although COVID-19 cases have steadily declined since the winter peak, BA.2 is believed to be 30% more transmissible than its original strain and known for its “stealth” ability to evade some tests.
Health officials have discovered BA.2 can have two additional symptoms that do not manifest in the original strains.
Here is what you need to know.
What are the symptoms of the BA.2 subvariant of COVID?
According to a report out of Spokane, Washington, the additional symptoms health officials say to look out for in the BA.2 subvariant are:
However, these symptoms can come from a number of different causes and cannot be the sole basis for determining if a person has this form of the omicron variant of COVID-19.
For reference, the initial strain of the omicron variant of COVID-19′s symptoms are the following:
- Sore Throat
How do I protect myself from the BA.2 subvariant?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), get vaccinated if you are 5 years of age or older and have not gotten your primary series of vaccinations.
If you are 12 years of age or older, the CDC recommends a booster shot if eligible.
Related stories about the omicron variant and COVID-19:
Where to buy N95, KN95, KF94 masks (and how to get some for free)
How to get a COVID booster shot at CVS, Walgreens or Rite Aid
The omicron variant symptoms to look out for if you are fully vaccinated
Can I get the omicron variant if I already had COVID?
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