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Update on Omicron and Other Variants

December 9, 2021

As scientists continue to learn more about the Omicron variant, emphasizing the core messages of protection and prevention is the best way to promote public health strategies, combat misinformation, and build trust. Here are sample topline messages:

· The best way to prevent the spread of this new variant or any other variant is to get vaccinated, get a booster if you are eligible, and wear a mask in indoor public settings or in crowded environments.

·Vaccination is the best way to protect against COVID-19. Being vaccinated decreases the likelihood you will get sick and makes it less likely you will need hospitalization or die if you get infected.

·As we learn more about COVID-19 and its variants, we update our guidance accordingly. Our recommendations are based on the latest data, and we continue to monitor new data.

Download graphics to share these messages, and visit our Answers to Tough Questions for additional messaging guidance and messages about the Omicron variant. We have also added new supporting messages to answer questions such as, “Why do new COVID-19 variants continue to emerge?” and “Why are COVID-19 cases still rising if vaccination rates are going up?”

For more insights about how public health professionals can communicate what we know (and what we don’t know) on the Omicron variant, we recommend NPR's "Omicron variant puts a new spin on COVID risk communication”.

Need Answers to Tough Questions about Public Health?
The Public Public Health Communications Collaborative has answers!

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