On January 1, 2021 Florida Dept. Health (FDOH) announced that it had evidence that one case of the UK COVID-19 variant, named B.1,1.7 or VUI-202012/01 has been identified in Martin County. The department added that a male, in his twenties, with no travel history, was found to have the variant.
They said that they were working with the CDC on the investigation and encouraged all to continue practicing COVID-19 mitigation.
They also said that as of now experts believe that variant will have little or no impact on the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine, although it is a more contagious strain of the coronavirus.
NPR had reported a similar case in California, where a man who was also in his twenties tested positive for the variant despite the fact that he had not traveled outside the U.S. In Colorado, two men from the Colorado National Guard, also tested positive for the variant. Neither of these men had traveled and one was in his twenties.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top expert on infectious diseases said that the new variant was most likely present in many states.
On Friday, the department announced that the COVID-19 daily report would not be released due to the holiday for New Year. Florida has had 1,323,315 positive cases out of which 1,300,528 were Florida residents. There have been more than 21,000 fatalities so far.
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