Nearly 60% of people in the United States, including 3 in 4 children, have now been infected with Omicron or another coronavirus variant, data released Tuesday show.
The new findings, which go through February 2022, highlight just how widely the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus spread in the country. On Tuesday, the virus even reached into the White House, with Vice President Kamala Harris reporting that she had tested positive. She has shown no symptoms, a spokesperson said, and would work outside the White House, at her official residence, until she tested negative.
Before the Omicron variant took off in the United States in December, the portion of the population that had been infected was about 1 in 3, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.
The updated figures come from a study that has been measuring the so-called seroprevalence of the coronavirus at various points throughout the pandemic. The study relies on testing blood samples from participants for particular antibodies that are generated only by an infection; they are different from the antibodies that Covid-19 vaccines elicit. This is the first time that the population seroprevalence is over 50%.