It's that time of year again when sickness is prevalent, and a new Covid-19 variant emerges with a vengeance.  

The AARP is calling this one the “great-great grandchild” of the omicron variant and is responsible for roughly a quarter of all the Covid cases in the U.S. right now. The new variant is known as HV.1 and comes just after the summer variant known as Eris or EG.5.  

Here is what you need to know about HV.1:

  • HV.1 is more contagious. 
  • It’s similar to its predecessors. 
  • Vaccines are still going to work. 

HV.1 is close enough to another Covid variant, XBB1.5, which is what the latest dose of vaccines targeted, to make your current boosters effective. However, since this mutation is considered more infectious, the Center for Disease Control is still closely monitoring outbreaks.  

The symptoms are the same including cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle aches, fever, and headaches. This new strain is not considered milder than any of the previous ones.  

Right now, HV.1 is responsible for 16,000 U.S. citizens being hospitalized per week. The AARP also reported that 1,200 Americans died during the week of Oct.7 from the virus.  

The advice remains the same; wear a mask if you want to in public spaces, wash your hands often and well, and get vaccinated.  

HV.1 is surging during the same time that Respiratory Syncytial Virus or RSV is also flaring up. Young children and the elderly are still the most at-risk groups along with those who have pre-existing health conditions.  

Stay safe, Utah.  


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