OSDH Weekly Briefing Recap
OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma State Department of Health held a media briefing today, Dec. 9, to provide updates on the state’s response to COVID-19.
Below, please see highlights from the discussion. A recording of the briefing can be found here.
- We are sequencing 100% of positive tests identified in the Public Health Lab to help monitor for the Omicron variant and others.
- The Omicron variant has been detected in 23 U.S. states, not including Oklahoma.
- We’re continuing to sequence positive PCR tests to ensure we’re adequately prepared with the right response.
- Right now in the U.S. 99% of COVID-19 cases are still attributable to the Delta variant.
- The COVID-19 vaccine is still the best tool we have to prevent and respond to COVID-19, especially as the holidays approach.
- We have seen an increase in cases based on our 7-day average. More important than case counts are hospitalizations, which provide insight regarding the severity of illness and the risk to the healthcare system. We have seen about a 20% increase in hospitalizations over the past couple weeks, but we are still well below the levels we have seen in previous surges.
- We have tools to combat the pandemic that we know work: effective COVID-19 vaccines. There is still time to make an appointment for your first COVID-19 shot or your booster shot ahead of your holiday gatherings this year.
- Whether you are getting your first dose or booster dose, the vaccine is a good way to give yourself peace of mind that you can celebrate with loved ones knowing you did your part to greatly reduce the risk of severe illness or hospitalization.
- Pfizer recently reported that a third dose of its COVID-19 vaccine increases antibodies against the Omicron variant substantially, and that even your initial two doses are likely to significantly reduce your odds of severe illness from this variant.
- For parents of young children, we recommend consulting with your child’s pediatrician about receiving the vaccine.
- As of today:
- 5,015,846 total doses have been administered
- 2,065,916 Oklahomans are fully vaccinated; this includes:
- 52.2% of the total population
- Boosters are an important part of the vaccination series to prevent serious illness.
- Booster doses of the Pfizer vaccine are available to all Oklahomans 16 and older, and booster doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are available to all Oklahomans 18 and older.
- Over the last month, approximately 20% of all reported cases were breakthrough cases, with less than 1% of these breakthrough infections hospitalized.
- The average timeframe between an individual’s last dose of the primary series and a positive diagnosis was 228 days, indicating the majority of these individuals would have been eligible for a booster dose at the time of infection.