The new omicron variant of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new virus SARS-CoV-2, has complicated the prospect of heralding in the New Year with friends — even vaccinated ones. It’s just one night, after all. A bottle of champagne and some dancing. It couldn’t hurt. Or could it?
Everyone dreads that post-party contact-tracing email or group text to say someone has tested positive for the virus. They go something like this: “Thanks for making New Year’s Eve so special. I am sorry to say that Mildred came down with symptoms of COVID-19 and tested positive the morning after.”
As the second Christmas of the coronavirus pandemic approaches with an atmosphere of nervous optimism, cases continue to rise. COVID-19 has killed 791,963 Americans. As of Dec. 6, the daily average case count in the U.S. was 120,917, up 38% in two weeks, according to the New York Times tracker.