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Officials in San Francisco in the US are asking residents not to call 911 except in dire emergencies to avoid further straining emergency resources, as coronavirus situations deplete the ranks of health workers, ambulance crews, firefighters and other basic workers.

The Omicron variant, which appears more likely to cause breakthrough situations already among vaccinated people, has begun to thin the ranks of those most needed to fight this latest wave of infections. San Francisco mayor London copy said on Friday that about 400 city employees, including emergency responders, had either tested positive for Covid-19 or were secluded at home due to exposure.

“Only call 911 or go to the emergency [department] for life-threatening medical emergencies,” the San Francisco Department of Emergency Management tweeted this weekend. “Keep medics obtainable for life-threatening situations.”

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