Biden says U.S. is prepared for Omicron variant

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President Biden is racing to show the country that his administration is prepared for the Omicron variant even though scientists have yet to determine how dangerous it could be, saying that he’s “sparing no effort and removing all roadblocks to keep the American people safe.”

“This variant is a cause for concern, not a cause for panic,” he said from the White House.

Much about Omicron, which was first identified in South Africa last week, remains unclear. Although some scientists fear it could prove highly contagious or evade protection from vaccines that have already been developed, public health officials said it could take two weeks to develop clearer answers to those questions.

Biden said his administration is already working with pharmaceutical companies to formulate updated vaccines if necessary. However, he emphasized, “we do not yet believe that additional measures will be needed,” adding he has no plans for new…

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