Medical experts: COVID-19 'Scrabble variants' could cause a winter surge
There's a new batch of COVID-19 variants brewing, and some health experts say it could cause a surge this winter.
According to city data, the new Omicron subvariants have a 20% positivity rate. The data also demonstrates that certain New York neighborhoods are seeing high positivity rates.
For example, the area of Country Club & Throggs Neck are seeing a 13.85% seven-day positivity rate. Neighborhoods like East New York in Brooklyn are seeing a 18.34% seven-day positivity rate.
The strains are already increasing cases in Europe and Singapore.
The co-director of the Center for Vaccine Development in Texas has dubbed these the "Scrabble variants" because they have letters like q and x that would get big scores in the Scrabble board game.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says these variants are responsible for nearly a third of all of the COVID-19 cases reported nationwide last week.
The city is continuing to urge New York residents to get vaccinated.