A new coronavirus variant has been detected, known as the EG.5, or eris, variant. Currently the most prevalent and fast-spreading variant in the U.S., EG.5 is causing an estimated 17% of new COVID-19 cases in the country. Here’s what we currently know about EG.5, so you can stay informed and keep your family safe.
What You Should Know
This particular coronavirus variant is a subvariant of the omicron variant and causes symptoms similar to those caused by other omicron subvariants. The most common symptoms of EG.5 include:
- Congestion or runny nose
- Fever or chills
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Sore throat
Although it’s new and spreading quickly, this variant is not a sign to panic, as experts say it’s no more dangerous than previous variants of the virus that have been circulating in the U.S. over the last six months. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared EG.5 to be a variant of interest, though they believe it poses a low public health risk at the global level.
Precautions You Can Take
Like with all illnesses, frequent and thorough hand-washing is one of the best steps you can take to prevent EG.5. Avoid touching your face, particularly your eyes, mouth or nose. Additional preventive measures you can take include:
- Disinfecting high-touch surfaces frequently
- Getting your COVID-19 booster shot
- Staying up to date with the latest by reading the CDC’s steps to protect yourself and others
If you're concerned you or a family member might have COVID-19, take a COVID-19 test, reach out to your local primary care provider or reserve a treatment time online for a COVID-19 test or care at your nearest AdventHealth Centra Care location.
Vaccines are more than 90% effective at preventing you from hospitalization due to COVID-19, making them the best protection against the virus. With an updated booster designed to target newer coronavirus variants expected to be available by the end of September, we encourage you to take a proactive approach to your health care and get your booster once it’s available.
Your Guide to Whole Health
If you’re unsure if your symptoms may be related to COVID-19, it’s always best to take safety measures. Stay home if you’re not feeling well to prevent the spread of infection and contact your health care provider if you’re experiencing concerning symptoms. For more information on COVID-19, visit our AdventHealth Coronavirus Resource Hub.