WASHINGTON – A highly infectious variant of the coronavirus, first identified in the UK, has become the leading source of new infections in the US, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday. The worrying development comes from officials and scientists warning of a possible one fourth climb of infections.
Federal health officials said in January that the B.1.1.7 variant, Which started billowing in Britain in the December and has since struck Europe, could become the dominant source of coronavirus infection in the United States, causing a huge increase in cases and deaths.
At that point, new cases, hospitalizations and deaths were at all-time highs. From that high point on, all numbers went back to the end of February. According to a New York Times database. After a few weeks on a plateau, new cases and hospital stays increase again. The average number of new cases in the country hit nearly 65,000 a day on Tuesday. mainly concentrated in subway areas in Michigan as well as in the New York City area. That is an increase of 19 percent compared to the number two weeks ago.
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, C.D.C. Director who warned last week that she has a recurring sense of “threatening fate“Said Wednesday that 52 of the agency’s 64 jurisdictions – including states, some major cities and territories – are now reporting Cases of these so-called “worrying variants” including B.1.1.7.
However, the death toll continues to decline – possibly a sign that mass vaccinations are beginning to protect older Americans and other high-risk populations.
“These trends point to two clear truths,” said Dr. Walensky. “First, the virus has still held us, infected people and put them at risk, and we must remain vigilant. Second, we must continue to accelerate our vaccination efforts and take individual responsibility to get vaccinated when we can.”
B.1.1.7, the first variant that is commonly known, is about 60 percent more contagious and 67 percent More deadly than the original form of the coronavirus according to the latest estimates. The C.D.C. has also tracked the spread of other variants, such as B.1.351, which was first found in South Africa and P.1, which was first identified in Brazil.
The percentage of cases caused by variants is increasing significantly. Helix, a laboratory testing company, has been tracking the relentless surge of B.1.1.7 since the start of the year. From April 3rd it is estimated that the variant accounted for 58.9 percent of all new tests.
This variant was found to be most common in Michigan, Florida, Colorado, California, Minnesota, and Massachusetts. according to CDC. Until recently it was Ascent of the variant was camouflaged somewhat by declining infection rates overall, prompting some political leaders to relax restrictions on indoor eating, social distancing, and other measures.
When the cases fell, troubled Americans went back to school and work. against the warnings some scientists.
Federal health officials are following reports of increasing cases related to daycare and youth sports, and hospitals are seeing more younger adults – people in their thirties and forties admitted with “serious illness,” said Dr. Walensky.
Due to the increasing frequency of B.1.1.7, it is difficult for scientists to say exactly how many of the current infection patterns are present.
“It’s messed up by reopening and behavior changes,” said Dr. Adam Lauring, a virologist at the University of Michigan.
But he noted that at a time people were becoming less cautious than they were supposed to protect themselves from a contagious variant. “It’s worrying,” he said.
At the same time, the United States is currently Vaccinate an average of three million people a dayand states have rushed to question all adults. The C.D.C. reported Tuesday that approximately 108.3 million people had received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, including approximately 64.4 million people who were fully vaccinated. New Mexico, South Dakota, Rhode Island, and Alaska lead the states, with about 25 percent of their total populations being fully vaccinated.
Scientists hope the vaccination will mitigate a possible fourth surge.
On Tuesday, President Biden has postponed his vaccination schedule All states have already achieved this goal or expect it to be an option by April 19. All states have already achieved or expect to achieve this goal after he originally asked them to do so by May 1st.
The variant B.1.1.7 first arrived in the USA last year. In February, a study that analyzed half a million coronavirus tests and Hundreds of genomes predicted that this variant could prevail in the country in a month. At this point the C.D.C. struggled to Sequence the new variantswhich made it difficult to track them.
However, those efforts have improved significantly in the past few weeks and will continue to grow, in large part attributable to $ 1.75 billion Means for genome sequencing by doing Stimulus package that Mr. Biden signed the law last month. In contrast, the UK, which has a more centralized health system, launched a heavily promoted sequencing program last year that allowed it to track the spread of variant B.1.1.7.
“We knew this was going to happen: this variant is much more communicable, much more contagious than the parent strain, and that obviously has an impact,” said Dr. Carlos del Rio, Professor of Medicine and Infectious Disease Expert at Emory University. The B.1.1.7 strain not only spreads more efficiently, but also appears to cause more severe disease “so you get a double blow”.
Perhaps even more worrying is the emergence of the virulent P.1 variant in North America. Identified for the first time in Brazil, it has become the dominant variant in that country and is helping to advance it Hospitals to break. In Canada the P.1 variant originated as a cluster in Ontarioand then closed the Whistler ski area in British Columbia. On Wednesday the National Hockey League Vancouver Canucks said at least 21 players and four employees had been infected with the coronavirus.
“This is a vivid reminder of how quickly the virus can spread and the serious effects it can have on even healthy, young athletes,” the team’s doctor Jim Bovard said in a statement.