The omicron variant is spreading at a high rate of speed, but Pfizer has a new experimental pill that can help put on the brakes.

Michigan COVID-19 cases, deaths, and hospitalization are rising across the state. Cold season is here, more people are indoors together, and with the delta and omicron variants thriving, the stats are only going to get worse.

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WOOD reported that Pfizer did a study with 2,250 people using a new pill to treat COVID-19. So far the new drug has reduced combined hospitalizations and deaths by just under 90% for those who had early symptoms. The big news is the drug retained its potency against the omicron variant.

Pfizer's new pill and a competing version from Merck may both soon be authorized by the Food and Drug Administration. If these new pills get approved, you will be able to go to the pharmacy and be able to treat yourself at home.

These new pills developed by Pfizer and Merck were tested on unvaccinated adults who were at the most risk due to their age or existing health issues.

There is still more testing to do, this time around they are working with vaccinated adults to see if the results are similar to the unvaccinated study they have already completed.

Health officials are hoping for more positive results so these new pills can get approved. Hospitals in West Michigan and around the country need some sort of relief from the COVID-19 overload they are seeing now and we have not gotten to January and February when the cold season is at its peak.

The Pfizer and Merck pills that are being studied are targeting a key protein that omicron uses to reproduce itself instead of the coronavirus spike protein. That being said, being vaccinated will take care of the early variants while the pill will combat the omicron variant.

KEEP READING: See 25 natural ways to boost your immune system

Answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

Vaccinations for COVID-19 began being administered in the U.S. on Dec. 14, 2020. The quick rollout came a little more than a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed has also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from the practical—how will I get vaccinated?—to the scientific—how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to discover answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions.

Gallery Credit: Stephanie Parker

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