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Video Balancing personal and community risk with the omicron variant

January 11, 2022 By Kelly April Tyrrell

The more contagious omicron variant of COVID-19 is breaking case records across the U.S., reaching people who had previously managed to avoid infection, and reinfecting others.

It’s been sidelining workers, filling hospitals and closing schools. While evidence suggests the illness it causes is milder than earlier versions of the virus, especially for the vaccinated, it’s led to a troublesome surge and has made it feel like we’ve undone some of the progress we made in 2021.

In this Badger Talks, resident preventive medicine physician Devlin Cole, of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, talks about how to think about our individual risk relative to the collective risk omicron has presented to society. While our personal risks may be lowered, hospitals are filling because of how quickly the virus has spread.

“You can still go out and do the things you want to do, but it’s going to take a bit more planning,” she says.