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LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – The World Health Organization designated the new omicron COVID-19 variant a variant of concern Nov. 26, 2021.

Kentucky doctors are still tackling delta and other variants in the U.S. as well as cold, flu, and other seasonal illnesses, but now with the looming concerns of omicron.

Cases of coronavirus have been rising in Kentucky since before the Thanksgiving holiday.

“Here in Kentucky, our cases are rising and our positivity rate is now above 8%. Let’s remember to do the right thing – get vaccinated, get boosted, and wear a mask indoors.,” Beshear wrote on Twitter Monday.

Lexington emergency physician, Dr. Ryan Stanton, said we have seen variants of concern pop-up before. Some of those variants haven’t really had much traction, but others like the delta variant have really caught on.

“At this point, I don’t think it is beneficial for any of us to be paralyzed in fear about Covid-19,” Stanton said. “It’s just doing all the things we can to protect ourselves and protect others. We as a country are better off than we were just a few months ago, not only because of the vaccination of a significant number of people, but also the natural immunity that exists out there too.”

Kentuckians should continue to mask up when appropriate, wash their hands, and get vaccinated according to Stanton.

This more transmissible variant has started to appear across the globe, but many leaders at the national and state levels have told people not to panic.

“The variant is a cause for concern,” Biden said Monday morning, “not a cause for panic.”