Cases of infection with the new COVID-19 strain have been detected in California, Minnesota, New York, Hawaii, and Colorado.

A new strain of COVID-19 Omicron was detected by the end of Thursday in at least five states, which once again demonstrated how quickly the mutated virus can appear in different parts of the World.

Just a day after the first case of infection with a new strain in the United States was discovered in California, it became known that at least five New Yorkers were infected with Omicron, as well as a resident of Minnesota who attended a meeting of anime fans in Manhattan at the end of November.

According to the authorities, the new strain was also detected in a resident of Colorado who recently visited one of the South African countries, a woman in Hawaii who has not traveled anywhere recently, and another Californian who returned from South Africa last month.

Little is known about Omicron yet, including its supposed increased contagiousness or its ability to overcome vaccine and natural immunity, as well as whether it causes the same symptoms as the original COVID-19 strain.

Health officials in each of the states where infected people were found said there was no reason for excessive anxiety. However, the spread of cases of infection, including among people who have not traveled anywhere recently, means that this strain is probably already circulating domestically in some parts of the United States.

“We have to assume that there is much more behind this and that the strain has already been here for a significant amount of time,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, speaking at a joint press conference with state Governor Kathy Hochul.

Among the infected New Yorkers is a 67-year-old woman from Long Island who recently visited South Africa, residents of Brooklyn and Queens. Also, another case is related to traveling to another country. At least one of the infected people received the COVID-19 vaccine, but the authorities do not yet have detailed information about the vaccination status of the four other people.

In Minnesota, health officials said that a person who had not traveled outside the United States had symptoms of the disease the day after attending a meeting of Anime NYC 2021 fans in New York. The head of the Minnesota Department of Health, Jan Malcolm, said that it is likely that the patient contracted COVID-19 at a meeting of anime fans, but officials cannot yet say for sure.