University Health chief medical officer offers answers to most-asked COVID-19 questions amid omicron surge

University Health’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Bryan Alsip, answered some of the most-asked questions about COVID-19 and the new omicron variant, which now accounts for a majority of new cases.

The first video in the player above contains answers to the following questions about omicron prevention and testing for COVID-19.

Why did the CDC shorten the time to 5 months between the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and boosters?Is it true that cloth masks don’t protect you from the Omicron variant, only N95s do?With more breakthrough infections, do the COVID-19 vaccines protect us from Omicron at all?Some people are getting a second or even third booster shot – is this a good idea?Is it possible we will need another COVID-19 booster soon?Some parents still have concerns about vaccinating their children against COVID-19. What do we know about safety?Is it true that COVID-19 home tests are more accurate when you swab your throat instead of your nose?Can you test positive for COVID-19 on a PCR test if it’s really the flu?How long should I wait after being exposed to COVID-19 to get tested?What if I have COVID-19 symptoms but can’t get a test?Can I go to an emergency room to get a COVID-19 test?

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In the second University Hospital video, Alsip answered the following questions about omicron infections and treatment:

How does Paxlovid, the Pfizer Covid pill, work, and when will it be available?If someone tests positive and has no symptoms, how should they quarantine or isolate if they live with others?Can you tell which COVID-19 variant you have from the symptoms?How can you tell Omicron from the flu, or Omicron from seasonal allergies?How much of a concern is “flurona” – co-infection with both COVID-19 and flu?Can you get Omicron and Delta at the same time?If Omicron is milder, shouldn’t we just get it and get it over with?Do we expect this wave to be different from the last three?

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