WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBS News) — President Biden on Monday urged Americans to remain calm as scientists work to determine the strength and the transmissibility of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus, saying the U.S. has the ability to deal with the new strain that is circulating the globe.

The president, flanked by chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci and Vice President Kamala Harris, told the nation the variant is a “cause for concern, not a cause for panic.”

He said the U.S. has more tools to fight COVID-19 than ever before, and is in a much better position to fight the virus than it was in March 2020, or even December 2020. The president said he’ll release a more detailed strategy on Thursday for fighting COVID-19 and the Omicron variant in the weeks ahead.

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