Oklahoma health experts say they are starting to see a small increase in COVID-19 cases in Oklahoma.
They say that is because there is a new variant spreading that's more contagious.
Health experts say they are closely watching a new subvariant of B-A.2
Dr. Bratzler with OU Health says there's been a 53% increase in COVID-19 cases in the United States in the past two weeks.
He says he was surprised to see the subvariant now accounting for nearly 30%of new cases in the U.S.
Dr. Bratzler says in our region, it accounts for nearly 9% of new cases. Our region includes Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico and Texas.
According to Dr. Bratzler, the good news is it doesn't appear to be increasing hospitalizations or causing more severe illness.
Dr. Bratzler says he has gotten questions about what provides the best overall protection against COVID-19: vaccination or infection.
"Whether you had COVID before or not, you should get vaccinated because that repeated exposure continues to mature your immune response to the infection," Dr. Bratzler said
Dr. Braztler says he is encouraging people to get booster shots and to get a vaccine that's different from their previous dose because that can also add extra protection.