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Maryland Health Dept. on the lookout for COVID-19 variant

January 2nd, 2021 by WCBC Radio

Maryland’s Health Department is on the lookout for a new strain of the coronavirus. A few months ago, a new variant of COVID-19 was discovered in the United Kingdom. In the past few weeks, that variant was found in Canada too. Now there are two cases in the United States: one in Colorado and one in California. Those first known U.S. cases have the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention worried it may have already spread to other areas of this country. And late Thursday, Florida health authorities reported finding evidence of the latest U.S. case in a man with no recent travel history, though it is still being investigated.

While there are no known cases in our region, Maryland’s Health Department is working with the CDC to check COVID-19 patient samples for the new strain, according to the Baltimore Sun.

It is believed this new strain will still be receptive to the vaccine, and so far, the CDC said it doesn’t think it will make people sicker than the original.

But there are concerns the new strain could have the potential to make more people sick, more quickly, as it may be a more contagious version of the virus.