ACROSS AMERICA — One of America’s top epidemiologists warns of a possible fourth outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic this summer. It is partially fueled by a more infectious variant of the virus.
Michael Osterholm, a former member of President Joe Biden’s coronavirus advisory board during the transition of power, was the first variant of the coronavirus detected in the United States on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday. But America. Subspecies B.1.1.7 is said to be 50-100% more infectious and up to 60% more likely to cause serious illness.
Osterholm called the variant a “Brand new ball game” It spreads more easily to children and says it has already been found in more than 700 schools in Minnesota within the last two weeks. He said blockades might have to be taken if the state wanted to successfully defeat the surge.
Here are five things you need to know about this COVID-19 variant:
1. What is a variant?
Variant is Common and expected outbreaks According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if the genetic makeup of the virus is mutated.
Some of these changes can be benign, but mutations can make it difficult to fight the virus. They are known as “variants of concern”.
B.1.1.7 Variant First identified in the UK Sometime in early December 2020, according to the CDC. But researchers believe it may have been in the country as early as September 2020.
It was finally reported in the United States by the end of December.
2. Where is it in the United States?
The CDC reports that 15,511 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant have been reported in the United States, and at least one variant has been reported in all states. Only a handful of states have more than 600 cases related to variants.
According to reports, 873 people were infected in California, 894 in Colorado, 655 in Pennsylvania, 712 in Massachusetts, 979 in Minnesota, 1,649 in Michigan, and 3,191 in Florida.
The number of people infected with this variant in the United States doubles every 10 days, Become the dominant stock in the country, According to the New York Times.
3. How serious is it?
According to the CDC, B.1.1.7 is characterized by a high transmission rate. This means it can spread more efficiently and quickly between groups of people. The increased susceptibility to infection has made this variant the predominant strain of virus in the United Kingdom, according to a report from the new Respiratory Virus Threat Advisory Group in the United Kingdom.
Not only is the strain easily transmitted It is believed to be deadly..
A UK advisory group reports that B.1.1.7 is “related to an increased risk of death compared to infection.” [non-variant of concern] Virus. “
4. Is the vaccine effective against it?
Yes, the three vaccines currently used in the United States appear to be effective against the B.1.1.7 strain. However, the CDC states that it is not clear how effective they are and that further research is needed.
“Preliminary evidence suggests that the currently licensed COVID-19 vaccine may provide some protection against a variety of strains. Including B.1.1.7, “According to the agency.
A preliminary study of one of the effects of Pfizer vaccines on variants was able to prevent serious infections in vaccinated people, but significantly. Less effective for people under 55, According to Science magazine.
5. What can you do next?
According to The New York Times, experts recommend continuing to implement the COVID-19 safety guidelines, such as wearing effective face coverings and avoiding crowds. We also recommend that you inoculate the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it becomes available.
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