No travel history in 1st reported USA case of coronavirus variant

Doctor: We need to work on communicating 'what the vaccine is and how it works'

The leading US infectious disease specialist, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said on Wednesday he foresees America achieving enough collective COVID-19 immunity through vaccinations to regain "some semblance of normality" by autumn 2021, despite early setbacks in the vaccine rollout.

Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said on Wednesday he was confident that early glitches in distribution of the vaccine will be overcome.

The guard member, who is in his 20s, was deployed at the Good Samaritan Society nursing home in Simla, where the Colorado National Guard is responding to an ongoing outbreak.

The earlier one of these cases was found in the state of Colorado for a male patient in his 20s who is now in isolation, reported BBC.

Nasal swab samples taken from the two as part of the Guard's routine coronavirus testing were sent to the state laboratory, which began looking for the variant after its spread was announced in Britain earlier this month, Herlihy said. "And if on the outside chance that [they aren't]. we can make changes to the vaccine".

The B.1.1.7 COVID variant was first identified in the United Kingdom where thousands of these cases have been reported already.

With the lack of travel history, there could be more cases of the variant spreading in the region as well, the officials said.

For the moment, the variant is likely still rare in the US, but the lack of travel history in the first case means it is spreading, probably seeded by travelers from Britain in November or December, said scientist Trevor Bedford, who studies the spread of COVID-19 at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

Given the degree of its spread in Britain and the amount of travel between the European country and the United States and through other countries in between, its arrival was expected, he said. He has mild symptoms and is isolating at his home near Denver, while the person with the suspected case is isolating at a Colorado hotel while further genetic analysis is done on his sample, officials said. "We are also increasing our surveillance throughout the state".

"The Department is working with the CDC (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) on this investigation", it tweeted. "We know it is a more contagious variant and that's a serious concern if it is only just now beginning to spread, given that our hospitals and ICUs, in particular, are already being filled". The variant has also been found in several other countries. Scientists are also confident that the COVID-19 vaccines that are rolling out now around the world will be just as effective against this variant.

"We're behind in finding it. Colorado is likely one of many places it's landed here", he said. Officials are now conducting more genetic testing to determine if the variant is present.

The discovery came as the county, along with the state, battles escalating cases.

The new variant is believed to have originated in southeast England, according to the World Health Organization.

New versions of the coronavirus have been seen almost since the virus was first detected in China nearly a year ago.



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