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Omicron

News and updates about Omicron

CDC approves COVID shots that target Omicron

CDC approves reformulated COVID-19 shots that target the latest Omicron subvariants.

CDC approves COVID shots that target Omicron

Pfizer seeks US approval of vaccine targeting Omicron

Pfizer submits application to FDA for an updated COVID-19 vaccine targeting the Omicron subvariant.

Pfizer seeks US approval of vaccine targeting Omicron

Britain authorizes Moderna's booster against Omicron

British regulators are the first in the world to authorize updated version of Moderna's vaccine that aims to protect against Omicron.

Britain authorizes Moderna's booster against Omicron

New research links COVID spike protein to heart damage

New generation of COVID vaccines may focus on T-cell response rather than spike protein encoding.

New research links COVID spike protein to heart damage

Moderna: COVID booster performed well against Omicron

Moderna says its new "bivalent" vaccine performed well against Omicron's latest subvariants.

Moderna: COVID booster performed well against Omicron

Study: Omicron has not eliminated Delta

The Omicron variant did not totally eliminate the Delta, and the Delta variant might return, Ben-Gurion University researchers warn.

Study: Omicron has not eliminated Delta

Two people infected with new 'mixed' Omicron subvariant

Health Ministry officials estimate new variant will not cause outbreak, Israel not at start of sixth wave.

Two people infected with new 'mixed' Omicron subvariant

'Drop in number of coronavirus cases slowing, but still a drop'

New subvariant is not Deltacron, but a mix of the two Omicron strains, Health Min.'s Prof. Nachman Ash says.

'Drop in number of coronavirus cases slowing, but still a drop'

Health Min. official 'disturbed' by spreading Omicron subvariant

'Coronavirus is not really over, there are around thousands of new cases,' Health Min.'s Prof. Nachman Ash says.

Health Min. official 'disturbed' by spreading Omicron subvariant

Infant girl becomes Hong Kong's youngest COVID-19 victim

Eleven-month-old girl had good past health, was in stable condition until one day before her death.

Infant girl becomes Hong Kong's youngest COVID-19 victim

'Omicron wave isn't over, numbers still higher than other waves'

Prof. Nachman Ash, Health Min. Director General, warns, 'Omicron causes mild illness, but number of serious cases is high.'

'Omicron wave isn't over, numbers still higher than other waves'

Omicron numbers still high: 17,658 new cases

Over 770 COVID-19 patients in serious condition, as 30.2% of COVID-19 tests come back positive.

Omicron numbers still high: 17,658 new cases

'World is better prepared to deal with future variants'

Head of BioNTech: The virus will mutate further, but the world has a better understanding on how to deal with it.

'World is better prepared to deal with future variants'

Bennett: Omicron wave is breaking

PM says his government's polices protected citizens from COVID while ensuring record economic growth, green pass ending.

Bennett: Omicron wave is breaking

PM Bennett: Omicron wave is breaking

Israeli Prime Minister Bennett convenes discussion on easing coronavirus restrictions, says Israel is the fastest-growing economy.

PM Bennett: Omicron wave is breaking

Omicron causing more neurological issues than previous variants

Many who recovered from Omicron experience extreme weakness, loss of consciousness, and even a comatose state, doctors say.

Omicron causing more neurological issues than previous variants

'Omicron-specific booster could be ready by August'

CEO of Moderna says firm is still gathering clinical data on Omicron-specific booster.

'Omicron-specific booster could be ready by August'

Report: Tourists, children, soon to be allowed into Israel

PM Bennett planning to allow foreign children to enter Israel, eliminate Green Pass for events, conferences.

Report: Tourists, children, soon to be allowed into Israel

Will decline of Omicron wave lead to return of PCR tests?

With case numbers declining, speculation has begun that home antigen tests may be replaced by PCR testing sites again.

Will decline of Omicron wave lead to return of PCR tests?

'The more cases, the less optimal the care will be'

Prof. Salman Zarka, coronavirus czar, says Israel has 700 cases of BA.2 variant, recommends home antigen tests before family gatherings.

'The more cases, the less optimal the care will be'

Netanyahu: There are vaccines but no government

Opposition leader blames government for large number of deaths and serious COVID cases during Omicron wave.

Netanyahu: There are vaccines but no government

Colds, sore throats and headaches

HMOs say the symptoms that characterize fifth COVID wave are different from those of previous waves.

Colds, sore throats and headaches

Green Pass to expire at midnight for most venues

Only weddings, clubs, & parties to remain restricted as government admits failure of vaccination to prevent spread of Omicron COVID variant.

Green Pass to expire at midnight for most venues

Erdogan tests positive for COVID-19

Turkish President says he and his wife tested positive for COVID-19 and have mild symptoms.

Erdogan tests positive for COVID-19

Breakthrough COVID-19 infections offer improved immunity

Hybrid immunity resulting from infection and vaccination provides more effective protection than vaccination or infection alone.

Breakthrough COVID-19 infections offer improved immunity

'Europe is in a COVID-19 ceasefire'

WHO Europe director says Europe could soon a "long period of tranquility" from COVID.

'Europe is in a COVID-19 ceasefire'

338 COVID-related deaths in one week

Number of new COVID cases continues to fall, marking decline of Omicron wave.

338 COVID-related deaths in one week

'80% serious cases are fully vaccinated' says Ichilov director

Vaccine has "no significance regarding severe illness," says Prof. Jacob Giris.

'80% serious cases are fully vaccinated' says Ichilov director

'We're not at the end of the wave, but I'm optimistic'

'To say peak of wave is behind us is like saying war is over when there are battles in north & south,' Hadassah's Prof. Dror Mevorach says.

'We're not at the end of the wave, but I'm optimistic'

Geriatric hospitals 'on brink of collapse' due to Omicron wave

Government COVID grants from 2020-1 have been stopped by the Finance Ministry, even though the crisis is far from over.

Geriatric hospitals 'on brink of collapse' due to Omicron wave

'Freezers for dead are full around Israel'

As Israel's death rates rise, burial societies struggle to keep up.

'Freezers for dead are full around Israel'

Fewer seriously ill patients, deaths, and new COVID cases

Infection coefficient continues to decline, suggesting Omicron wave may be past its peak, with number of deaths also appearing to fall.

Fewer seriously ill patients, deaths, and new COVID cases

New BA.2 subvariant may be more infectious than Omicron

'Around 10% of COVID-19 tests sequenced are the BA.2 variant,' Health Min. Director General says.

New BA.2 subvariant may be more infectious than Omicron

Over 500 dead from COVID-19 in January: 'This was preventable'

'There was & still is a policy of mass infection, there will be excess mortality which could have been prevented,' Hebrew U. professor says.

Over 500 dead from COVID-19 in January: 'This was preventable'

First cases of Omicron patients reinfected with BA2 strain

New, even more infectious strain of Omicron variant found among Israelis who already recovered from Omicron infection.

First cases of Omicron patients reinfected with BA2 strain

Bennett: A difficult week-and-a-half ahead

PM at COVID Cabinet meeting says govt. not rushing to lockdowns as if COVID was the end of the world, but not complacent either.

Bennett: A difficult week-and-a-half ahead

Between 100-200 Israeli children expected to develop PIMS

'Still too early to compare PIMS after Omicron versus after Delta, but PIMS doesn't happen after vaccine,' coronavirus czar says.

Between 100-200 Israeli children expected to develop PIMS

Pfizer to ask FDA to approve vaccine for children 0-5

Pfizer, BioNTech, expected to request emergency use authorization for 2-dose COVID-19 vaccine series for children 6 months to 5 years.

Pfizer to ask FDA to approve vaccine for children 0-5

Increase in complications for children recovered from Omicron

Number of severe COVID-19 cases has not yet peaked, but reports of Omicron's neurological side effects are becoming more common.

Increase in complications for children recovered from Omicron

Education Ministry admits: 'No way of enforcing plan'

'State gave responsibility over to the public, those without have test kids must follow previous plan,' Ed. Min. Director General says.

Education Ministry admits: 'No way of enforcing plan'

Netanyahu rips Bennett's handling of Omicron wave

'We'll get out of the Omicron despite Bennett government's policies - not because of them,' says Opposition Leader Netanyahu.

Netanyahu rips Bennett's handling of Omicron wave

'Israel has hit peak number of infections - but not deaths'

Fifth Wave of coronavirus has already passed its peak in terms of new infections, says researcher, though deaths will continue to rise.

'Israel has hit peak number of infections - but not deaths'

Cabinet extends Green Pass rules by 1 week

PM Bennett says at Cabinet meeting he hopes peak of Omicron wave has passed.

Cabinet extends Green Pass rules by 1 week

Experts: Number of cases will drop to 10,000 within two weeks

Newly published data show a decline in the number of cases, but Health Minister warns: Two more difficult weeks are ahead.

Experts: Number of cases will drop to 10,000 within two weeks

'We're not at a stage where we can change infection rates'

'Vaccinated children develop PIMS less - and even when they do develop it - it's milder,' children's hospital director Dr. Pessach says.

'We're not at a stage where we can change infection rates'

'There are signs that the peak of Omicron is behind us'

Health Ministry estimates that close to three million Israelis became infected during Omicron wave.

'There are signs that the peak of Omicron is behind us'

Bennett, ministers agree to add 45 ICU beds

PM, Ministers Hororitz and Liberman agree on measure to relieve burden on hospitals as Omicron wave rages.

Bennett, ministers agree to add 45 ICU beds

Teachers Union: Gov't made populist decision, abandoned teachers

Israel Teachers Union responds to court ruling striking planned strike: 'Shame government insists on gambling on dubious, dangerous plan.'

Teachers Union: Gov't made populist decision, abandoned teachers

Ed. Min. slams critics of plan ending quarantine for children

Education Min.: 'Claims I'm a coronavirus denier are fake news, I hope everyone understands that we need to free everyone from quarantine.'

Ed. Min. slams critics of plan ending quarantine for children

Moderna starts trial of Omicron-specific booster

Moderna says first participant has been dosed in Phase 2 clinical trial of COVID-19 booster shot that is specific to Omicron variant.

Moderna starts trial of Omicron-specific booster

'Dangerous and irresponsible' to cancel quarantine for children

Association to advance public health warns, 'New policy to cancel quarantine gambles with present & future lives & health of our children.'

'Dangerous and irresponsible' to cancel quarantine for children

'We'll need to treat more patients in the staff's cafeteria'

'Those dying of coronavirus are divided into those who were not vaccinated, and those who were vaccinated but had pre-existing conditions.'

'We'll need to treat more patients in the staff's cafeteria'

PM holding talks on elimination of quarantine for children

PM Bennett calls meeting of Health, Education, ministry officials to discuss delaying quarantine cancellation for children exposed to COVID.

PM holding talks on elimination of quarantine for children

In one week: 1,169,048 new COVID-19 cases

Number of coronavirus patients in serious condition rises to 888, with 187 intubated.

In one week: 1,169,048 new COVID-19 cases

Hospital director: 'Situation now worst since start of pandemic'

Forty times more deaths as hospital directors warn, 'Soon we won't be able to provide reasonable treatment.'

Hospital director: 'Situation now worst since start of pandemic'

Don't eliminate quarantine for schoolchildren

'Within four days number of children suffering severe cases of COVID-19 has doubled,' Prof. Zachi Grossman says.

Don't eliminate quarantine for schoolchildren

Pfizer and BioNTech launch Omicron vaccine trial

Pfizer and BioNTech begin enrollment for clinical trial to test their Omicron-specific COVID-19 vaccine.

Pfizer and BioNTech launch Omicron vaccine trial

2 medical staff who refused vaccine in critical condition

Senior doctor, paramedic who did not get vaccinated for ideological reasons in life-threatening condition with COVID.

2 medical staff who refused vaccine in critical condition

Netanyahu: Bennett, Lapid do nothing while COVID rages

Opposition leader says government has abandoned Israelis in both the health and economic fields, leading to disaster.

Netanyahu: Bennett, Lapid do nothing while COVID rages

Increase in neurological issues in children who had Omicron

Unvaccinated recovering from Omicron don't develop sufficient immunity against other strains, military report says, quoting studies.

Increase in neurological issues in children who had Omicron