A second case of the B.1.1.7 COVID-19 variant has been found in Wisconsin, the Department of Health Services said Tuesday.
DHS said the second case was detected on Feb. 6.
The B.1.1.7 variant was first discovered circulating in England in November and December. The first case of that strain was detected in a patient in Eau Claire on Jan. 12.
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“It is concerning that we have identified a second case of a variant that spreads more easily. We are able to sequence a small proportion of tests collected, which means, in reality, there are likely many more cases of this variant in Wisconsin,” said Dr. Ryan Westergaard, the Chief Medical Officer in the DHS Bureau of Communicable Diseases. “Wisconsinites must continue to be vigilant to stop the spread of COVID-19 by wearing masks, staying home, washing their hands, and getting vaccinated when they are able.”
Researchers believe this strain of COVID-19 spreads more rapidly than the original strain.
DHS did not say where the second case of the variant was detected.
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