The Pasadena Public Health Department Monday reported its first laboratory-confirmed case of a resident contracting COVID-19 with mutations consistent with the new Omicron variant.

The infected person was fully vaccinated with a booster dose and had not recently traveled internationally, city officials said. The virus was likely transmitted locally in early December.

Pasadena Health Department officials said the person “has recovered from a mild illness that did not require hospitalization.”

Close contacts of the individual are self-isolating.

The Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus was first identified in Africa; as of Dec. 8, 13 cases of the Omicron variant have been reported in the state of California.

The Omicron variant has been deemed a “variant of concern” by the World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, it remains unclear if the variant is more easily transmitted or can cause more severe illness. The previously identified Delta variant — blamed for the most recent surge in cases nationwide — remains the dominant mutation in circulation, representing more than 99% of all COVID specimens that have undergone genetic testing in the county, Ferrer said this week.

“Now is the time for anyone who is not yet vaccinated to get fully vaccinated, and for everyone 16 years and older to get a booster dose,” said Dr. Ying-Ying Goh, health officer and director of the Pasadena Public Health Department. “Getting vaccinated, including a booster, remains your best defense against COVID-19 variants.”

COVID-19 vaccines are available through the Pasadena Public Health Department at no cost. People age 5 years and over are eligible to receive vaccine. For more information and to register for an appointment, visit MyTurn.ca.gov.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.