Saturday, January 16, 2021
Home Health & Fitness First known US case of UK COVID-19 variant confirmed in Colorado

First known US case of UK COVID-19 variant confirmed in Colorado


The U.S. has confirmed its first case of a new, likely more transmissible variant of the coronavirus first identified in the U.K.

#On #Tuesday, #Colorado #Gov. #Jared #Polis reported that state health officials discovered the first case of the COVID-19 variant B.1.1.7 in a man in his 20s.

- Advertisement -

“There is a lot we don’t know about this new COVID-19 variant, but scientists in the #United #Kingdom are warning the world that it is significantly more contagious. The health and safety of #Coloradans is our top priority and we will closely monitor this case, as well as all COVID-19 indicators, very closely. #We are working to prevent spread and contain the virus at all levels,” said #Polis in a tweeted statement.

#British authorities are blaming the new variant of the coronavirus for soaring infection rates in #London and southeast #England. They say the new version is more easily transmitted than the original, but stress there is no evidence it makes people sicker.

#In response, authorities have put a swath of #England that’s home to 24 million people under restrictions that require nonessential shops to close, bar indoor socializing and allow restaurants and pubs only to operate for takeout.

#Even so, hospital admissions for COVID-19 in southeast #England are approaching or exceeding the levels seen at the first peak of the outbreak. #Government figures show 21,286 people were hospitalized with the coronavirus across the U.K. on #Dec. 22, the last day for which data is available. #That is only slightly below the high of 21,683 COVID-19 patients who were recorded in U.K. hospitals on #April 12.

#On #Tuesday, the #United #Arab #Emirates detected the country’s first known cases of the B.1.1.7 variant of the coronavirus. The UAE’s #National #Emergency #Crisis and #Disaster #Management #Authority reported #Tuesday it found “a limited number of cases received from abroad,” without specifying how many or where the travelers had been.

#In response, neighboring #Gulf countries halted international commercial flights. The UAE, with its large population of #British expats, has remained open to tourists. #Those arriving from the U.K. are required to get tested for the virus upon arrival in #Dubai.

- Advertisement -

#On #Monday, #Japan began barring entry of all nonresident foreign nationals as a precaution against the new virus strain. The #Foreign #Ministry says the entry ban will last through #Jan. 31.

#Colorado #Governor #Jared #Polis, left, points to the #Covid-19 vaccine in a small vial as he watches as #Gina #Harper, clinical coordinator with pharmacy, right, reconstitutes a dose of the #Covid-19 vaccine before it is administered to the first patients (#Photo by #Helen H. #Richardson/MediaNews #Group/The #Denver #Post via #Getty #Images)

#Last week, #Japan banned nonresident foreigners coming from #Britain and #South #Africa after confirming the new variant in seven people over two days — five from #Britain who tested positive at airports and two others in #Tokyo.

#On #Sunday, officials in #Canada’s most populous province also identified confirmed cases of the contagious new form of COVID-19.

The province’s associate chief medical officer says that the cases are a couple from #Durham #Region, just east of #Toronto, with no known travel history, exposure or high-risk contacts.

The coronavirus variant in the #United #Kingdom has caused global alarm because of the possibility that it might spread more easily. #But experts say the COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out will likely still work on the variant.

- Advertisement -

#Dr. #Anthony #Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease expert, said data coming from #Britain indicates the vaccines still will block the virus. #But the U.S. also will do tests to be sure.

RELATED: #Fauci, CDC say new COVID-19 strain accelerating spread in UK may already be in US

#Fauci previously said that the new variant has most likely already been on U.S. soil even before being positively identified in #Colorado.

“#When you see something that is pretty prevalent in a place like the U.K. — there are also mutations that we’re seeing in #South #Africa — and given the travel throughout the world, I would not be surprised if it is already here,” #Fauci told PBS.

#Viruses often undergo small changes as they reproduce and move through a population. #In fact, the slight modifications are how scientists track the spread of a virus from one place to another.

#But if a virus mutates significantly enough, one worry is that current vaccines might no longer offer as much protection. #And although that’s a possibility to watch for over time with the coronavirus, experts say they don’t believe it will be the case with the variant in the U.K.

“#My expectation is, this will not be a problem,” said #Moncef #Slaoui, the chief science adviser for the U.S. government’s COVID-19 vaccine push.

#Vaccine maker #Pfizer-BioNTech told FOX #Television #Stations that its researchers are currently testing its vaccine, which was the first authorized for emergency use by the FDA, against the new strain of COVID-19. #Researchers said they expected new strains of the virus and took that into account when developing the vaccine that’s now being distributed in the U.S.

“#We don’t know at the moment if our vaccine is also able to provide protection against this new variant,” #BionNTech’s CEO #Ugur #Sahin said in a news conference the day after the vaccine was approved for use in the #European #Union. “#But scientifically, it is highly likely that the immune response by this vaccine also can deal with the new virus variants.”

#Chris #Williams and the #Associated #Press contributed to this story.



[ source link ]
https://www.fox5dc.com/news/first-known-us-case-of-uk-covid-19-variant-confirmed-in-colorado

#case #COVID19 #variant #confirmed ##Colorado

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Recent Comments