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COVID-19 infections spiking in US Capitol

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Coronavirus infections in the US Capitol have skyrocketed, according to a memo sent to lawmakers from Capitol physician Brian Monahan. (AP file photo))

Coronavirus infections in the United States Capitol have skyrocketed, with lawmakers and their staff members mostly getting affected by omicron and delta variants.

According to a memo sent to lawmakers on Monday from Capitol physician Brian Monahan, the daily infections rates will increase even more significantly in the coming weeks, The Hill reported. 

Both vaccinated individuals, as well as unvaccinated individuals, are contracting COVID-19.

 This comes after a record spike in COVID infections was seen in the greater Washington, DC, region, following the spread of the highly contagious omicron variant.

Omicron represents approximately 61 percent of positive tests, and the delta virus variant represents 38 percent, Monahan said.

"The most common risk of acquiring infection is the individual's activities outside the workplace, such as attendance at receptions, entertainment venues, celebrations, family gatherings, travel, and crowded indoor situations," Monahan wrote.

The majority of the cases were found in vaccinated individuals, but the infections have not led to hospitalizations, serious complications or deaths, "attesting to the value of coronavirus vaccinations,” according to Monahan.

"Blue surgical masks, cloth face masks and gaiter masks must be replaced by the more protective KN95 or N95 masks," Monahan wrote.

He recommended offices adopt telework as much as possible to reduce in-person meetings and in-office activities.

"Measures to address coronavirus spread remain essential. While some view the SARS CoV2 coronavirus disease as 'endemic,' the 'new normal,' and 'inevitable,' these views are premature. The entire community must continue to take every measure to suppress the rapid spread of this disease," the memo stated.

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