Omicron’s Subvariant: BA.2

Josie Pappone, Contributing Writer

For the past couple of years, we have adapted to a new way of life to prevent the spreading of Covid. Months were spent in quarantine, many too scared to go in public spaces. However, due to the hard work of researchers who created vaccines and allowed us to finally resume in-person school, life has gone back to normal for the most part. 

Regardless, Covid is a new disease that is still being investigated to this day. With the discovery of unknown variants and subvariants, many worry about the dangers they may pose to the public if we are not wary of them. 

The detection of the Omicron variant in late 2021 sparked fear in Americans due to its high infection rate. A similar apprehension is being felt towards the BA.2 variant of Omicron. The BA.2 variant has been nicknamed “stealth” Omicron due to its genetic mutations that make it difficult to discern. This so-called “stealth” variant is sweeping through Europe and Asia. Europe’s Covid rates which were once plateauing in the single digits are now in the thousands. According to CNBC, Germany is reaching a concerning level after reporting 250,000 to 300,000 new cases in the last week. Additionally, HHS student Sherry Sze includes, “I saw on TikTok that China’s Covid situation is so bad right now that they’re locking residents in their homes and there’s a national shortage of food. I’m afraid if this strand reaches the west we’ll forget how to socially distance and wear masks since we’ve already normalized a society that’s almost gone back to normal.” Sherry’s worries are justified, as CNBC describes the BA.2 outbreak in China as “their worst outbreak since 2020.” 

But what does this mean for us in the United States? Many may be fearful of another lockdown as stated by junior Piper Jordan, “I hope that BA.2 doesn’t lead to an outbreak here because it feels that society is just getting back to what feels like normal and I want to be able to move on to activities that I love that couldn’t happen with Covid.” Fortunately, Covid cases are still on the lower side nationwide but that does not mean an outbreak is impossible. According to, Yale Medicine the best way to avoid the spreading of BA.2 is to get vaccinated and/or wear face masks and keep hands clean before and after entering public spaces. There is no telling what will happen in the future, and according to Vox cases are bound to fluctuate, but the most useful thing to do is to stay calm and to do all possible to keep oneself and others healthy.