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The subvariant of Omicron, BA.5 is now the predominant strain of COVID in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that BA.5 currently accounts for 80% of all cases throughout the United States. Due in large part to the strain's ability to spread, the number of confirmed COVID cases worldwide has risen to staggering heights. The current spike we're experiencing is the second largest spike in confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic, second only to the Omicron spike last winter. Additionally, given the proliferation and widespread use of at-home tests, the number of cases is likely much higher than what's being reported. So why aren't we hearing more about COVID?

 

 Well, that answer depends on where you live. Chicago's Covid warning level was raised to "high" last week; however, the city's top doctor dismissed the threat of COVID, according to an article by the New York Times. Conversely, California's medical experts are warning about this most recent wave and looking into the possibility of reinstating mandates. With health experts disagreeing over the threat BA.5 poses, it's hard to understand how seriously to treat the pandemic.

 

Despite death rates not being as high as other spikes, the threat of COVID is still very real. As more data comes out about COVID, medical professionals are learning more about the potential impact of COVID long term. Medical issues stemming from COVID emerging long after the date of infection, known as long COVID, have been shown to seriously affect the lives of those that have the disease. The symptoms are wide-ranging but primarily neurological. In an article by CBS News, the publication cited brain fog, forgetfulness, lack of concentration, and muscle fatigue as being the most common symptoms of long COVID. Professor Sofie Nystrom from Linkoping University told CBS that some of the conditions found in people with long COVID are consistent with people with Alzheimer's. For some, the symptoms are debilitating enough to impact their career. According to an article by Fortune, 65% of the 16 million people currently infected with COVID may see long COVID affect their work.

 

Monitoring and managing the spread of COVID is incredibly important. With Kokomo24/7®'s software solutions, you can help your students, employees, etc. avoid getting COVID. Our vaccine and testing tracking software let users upload their vaccination or testing status into a centralized system for easy access by administrators. With our case management solution, administrators can document all information relating to a COVID case or other incident. To find out how Kokomo24/7® can help your organization, click the button below.

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