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South African COVID-19 variant found in Kansas



Finney County, Kansas (KWCH)-According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), Finney County has discovered a variant of COVID-19 in South Africa. This is the first known case of a variant in this state.

The variants were confirmed by whole-genome sequencing performed by the KDHE laboratory. The national health department said that a case investigation is underway to determine how the person was infected with this specific variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and whether other people may have been exposed. No more detailed information about the patient was released, including demographic information.

The B.1

.351 variant was first discovered in South Africa in December and has been found in 31 states and regions in the United States. At present, it has not caused more serious diseases, and it is not clear whether it spreads the strain more easily than other diseases. Although this strain can reduce the effectiveness of certain vaccines, the vaccine can still provide strong protection against serious illness and death.

“We continue to encourage people to take appropriate precautions. KDHE Secretary Dr. Lee Norman said: “This includes wearing a mask that fits closely to the nose and face and has multiple layers of fabric, or a thinner mask with a thinner layer. Mask to improve the fit. “The Kanzan people should also follow the isolation and quarantine recommendations, keep their bodies distant, maintain good hygiene habits, stay at home when they are sick, and be vaccinated if possible. “

Dr. Dana Hawkinson, an infectious disease physician at the University of Kansas Health System University, said that this variant spreads more easily than the COVID-19 virus and may be life threatening. But at present, there is not enough reliable data.

“Sometimes, they are related to increased transmission capacity. Dr. Hawkinson said: “Whether they will cause more serious diseases, more serious diseases, is still under investigation. “At present, the jury has not yet made a decision on this. The investigation is ongoing. “

Although there are still many unknowns, early data suggests that all three COVID-19 vaccines are effective in preventing severe cases of this variant. Pfizer said on Thursday that its vaccine has performed well in clinical trials in South Africa.

Dr. Hawkinson said: “When you are vaccinated, even with these new variants, you still have good efficacy and protection against serious diseases and hospitalization or death.”

Another interesting variant, B.1.1.7, also known as the UK variant, has previously been identified in Kansas. Currently, 76 cases have been detected in 14 counties. This variant was first reported in the United States in December 2020. Evidence from the United Kingdom shows that this variant spreads faster in the population, and in light of this, it may rapidly increase the number of hospitalizations and deaths. More research is needed to confirm this finding.

All Kansans can get the test for free. To find a location near you, please visit: www.gogettested.com/kansas.

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