Most of us love surprises, especially when the surprises are good!

Older television audiences know the expression, Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! Private Gomer Pyle used it along with Shazam! and Golly! Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! (in Gomer Pyle’s voice) is also heard on the 1979 Pink Floyd record, The Wall – again a surprise.

However, today, decades after Gomer Pyle and Pink Floyd, we are reading daily about the invasion of the Omicron variant. I noticed that the Omicron variant appears to infect the fully vaccinated more than other groups (unvaccinated, single-shot, and those with naturally acquired immunity).

The Omicron Variant Conundrum in the United States CDC reported that most Omicron variant infections are in people today who are fully vaccinated. Nearly 80% of Americans infected with the COVID-19 Omicron variant are in people who were fully vaccinated. Over 40% of the newly infected had received their booster shots.

The numbers at this time are small and may not indicate future infections. However, it is startling and surprising that the fully vaccinated are becoming infected by the Omicron variant.

Pandemic Status Worldwide statistics show that the new cases of the pandemic virus are increasing at a level slightly less than the three previous surges. Seven weeks ago, the worldwide new case rate of COVID-19 infections bottomed out around 400,000/day. This week, the infection rate is over 620,000/day based on a seven-day average.

However, the daily deaths are at the lowest level in thirteen months. For the past six weeks, the seven-day average of daily deaths from COVID-19 is fluctuating around 7,000/day. New cases are increasing dramatically, and daily deaths are static. That is good news!

South Africa and the Omicron Variant The silver lining in the new case rate of COVID-19 appears to be the Omicron variant. It was found in South Africa in November and has spread to many countries since. However, the virulence of the Omicron variant appears to be much more benign than the Delta variant (still dominant in the United States – nearly 99% of all new cases).

In less than a month, the new case rate of COVID-19 (mostly Omicron variant) has risen from a seven-day average of under 300/day to over 15,000/day. The daily death rate attributed to COVID-19 for the past six weeks has been around 25/day.


The Omicron variant is more transmissible than the Delta variant but not as deadly. That is a great surprise! It is great news. If (and when) the Omicron variant supersedes the Delta variant as the prime variant of COVID-19, the world will have a hiatus from the deadly effects of the pandemic virus.

Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin –



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