The Omicron variant of the coronavirus has been so contagious that it might have appeared a foregone conclusion that if one individual in a family turned sick, different individuals residing there would catch the virus, too.
But that seems to be much less sure: A small study of households by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched on Friday discovered that when the primary individual contaminated wore a masks and stayed in a separate room no less than a part of the time, the danger of different family members contracting the virus turned markedly decrease.
Vaccinated individuals who turned contaminated have been additionally significantly much less possible than unvaccinated individuals to unfold the virus to different members of their households.
Still, the research highlighted simply how aggressively the Omicron variant had unfold inside a house, particularly amongst individuals residing with youngsters below 5 who examined constructive. Those youngsters, who are usually not but eligible for vaccines and infrequently must be in nearer contact with their dad and mom or family members, unfold the virus to 72 % of family contacts recognized within the research — the very best fee of any age group, the C.D.C. stated.
“These findings further highlight young children’s potential contribution to household transmission,” C.D.C. scientists wrote within the report.
Federal regulators are ready for knowledge on how nicely three doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine work in youngsters below 5 earlier than deciding whether or not to authorize the vaccine for that age group.
The C.D.C. research was primarily based on 183 households throughout 4 states the place somebody turned contaminated with the Omicron variant from November to early February. After interviewing members of the households about their vaccination and an infection histories, any precautionary measures within the residence and whether or not they had examined constructive or develop into sick, C.D.C. scientists decided that the variant had unfold in roughly two-thirds of the households they recognized.
But when the primary contaminated individual was absolutely vaccinated, solely about 44 % of family members developed Covid, in contrast with 64 % when the contaminated individual was unvaccinated, the research stated.
And when the unique contaminated family member stayed in a room alone no less than among the time, solely 41 % of different members of the family turned contaminated, in contrast with 68 % in conditions with out isolation. Masking by the contaminated individual helped, too, lowering the probability of transmission to 40 % from 69 %.
Determining the exact threat of the virus spreading in a house was tough, the research’s authors famous. They excluded conditions the place it was unclear who had first developed Covid, and didn’t do the genetic sequencing essential to know for sure that folks had caught the virus from the contaminated individual of their residence slightly than at different gatherings.