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First known U.S. cases of the South African COVID-19 variant have been found in South Carolina – WYFF4 Greenville

By January 28, 2021 Entertainment News

VARIANTS IDENTIFIED IN SOUTH AFRICA HAS BEEN FOUND IN, SOUTH CAROLINA. DHEC OFFICIALS SAY THESE ARE THE FIRST TWO CASES OF THIS VARIANT IN THE US. NOLAN BLAIR JOINS US WITH THE LATEST. TELL THEM WHAT CAN YOU TELL US? CAROL SOUTH CAROLINA HEALTH OFFICIALS WERE NOTIFIED LATE YESTERDAY BY THE CDC OF A SOUTH CAROLINA SAMPLE THAT WAS TESTED AT LABCORP AND DETERMINED TO BE THE VARIANT ORIGINALLY IDENTIFIED IN SOUTH AFRICA. ALSO DX PUBLIC HEALTH LABORATORY TESTED SAMPLES ON MONDAY AND WEDNESDAY IDENTIFIED A SAMPLE CASE OF THE SAME VARIANT ONE CASE WAS REPORTED IN THE LOW COUNTRY IN THE OTHER IN THE PD REGION. WE ARE TOLD THE TWO CASES WERE REPORTED IN ADULTS AND ARE NOT CONNECTED THEY SAY AT THIS TIME. THERE IS NO COMMON. THERE IS NO KNOWN TRAVEL HISTORY. HEALTH OFFICIALS SAY THESE ARE THE FIRST TWO CASES OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA SOUTH AFRICAN VARIANT IN THE UNITED STATES OTHER STATE SEEN HERE IN ORANGE HAVE FOUND CASES OF VARIANTS THAT ORIGINATED IN THE UNITED KINGDOM. MULTIPLE VARIANTS OF THE VIRUS THAT CAUSES COVID-19 HAVE BEEN DOCUMENTED IN THE UNITED STATES AND OTHER COUNTRIES. OTHER STATES HAVE HAD CASES OF A UNITED KINGDOM VARIANT. THE SOUTH AFRICA VARIANT IS NOT RELATED TO THE UNITED KINGDOM VARIANT THE TWO ARE VERY DIFFERENT. BOTH SPREAD EASIER AND QUICKER THAN THE CURRENT SARS COVEY TO VIRUS THAT CAUSES COVID-19. BUT NEITHER CAUSES MORE SEVERE ILLNESS. RESEARCHERS IN THE UNITED STATES PREDICTED IT WAS ONLY A MATTER OF TIME BEFORE THE VARIANT IDENTIFIED IN SOUTH AFRICA REACHED THE UNITED STATES AS WELL. SOUTH CAROLINA’S HEALTH OFFICIALS SAID WEARING A MASK AND PRACTICING SOCIAL DISTANCING CAN HELP PREVENT THE SPREAD OF THIS VIRUS TO READ MORE ABOUT THE SOUTH AFRICAN COVID-19 VARIAN

First known U.S. cases of the South African COVID-19 variant have been found in South Carolina

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced Thursday the detection of two cases associated with the SARS-CoV-2 variant that first emerged recently in South Africa. These are the first two cases of this variant in the United States. South Carolina public health officials said they were notified late Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of a South Carolina sample that was tested at LabCorp and determined to be the B.1.351 variant originally identified in South Africa. MORE NEWS: More than 200 new COVID-19 deaths reported Thursday in SC, including pediatric death in Upstate 6 dead, others injured after liquid nitrogen leak at Georgia poultry plant, officials saySouth Carolina Senate passes bill outlawing most abortionsSmoke fills downtown Greenville church sanctuary after small fire, fire chief saysBomb threat at Greenville Downtown Airport came in through faxMedical facility that gave COVID-19 vaccines to teachers early says supply has been cut for 6 monthsUpstate high school teachers, staff accidentally given COVID-19 vaccineAlso, DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory tested samples on Jan. 25 and Wednesday identified a separate case of the same variant. Since June 2020, DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory has been performing tests of random samples in order to identify any instances of the variant viruses. Watch the full news conference below: DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory will continue to conduct this important sampling to identify any other changes in the virus.DHEC said experts agree that existing vaccines work to protect us from this variant, even if we don’t know precisely how effective they are. At this time, there’s no evidence to suggest that the B.1.351 variant causes more severe illness, DHEC said. “The arrival of the SARS-CoV-2 variant in our state is an important reminder to all South Carolinians that the fight against this deadly virus is far from over,” said Dr. Brannon Traxler, DHEC Interim Public Health Director. “While more COVID-19 vaccines are on the way, supplies are still limited. Every one of us must recommit to the fight by recognizing that we are all on the front lines now. We are all in this together.”At this point in time, there is no known travel history and no connection between these two cases, DHEC said. DHEC said both are adults; one from the Lowcountry and one from the Pee Dee region.The B.1.351 variant has been identified in more than 30 countries but these are the first cases of this variant identified in the United States. Other states have had cases of another, called B.1.1.7, originally identified in the United Kingdom. Both variants originally detected in the United Kingdom and South Africa spread easier and quicker than the majority of SARS-CoV-2 variants. The South Africa and United Kingdom variants emerged independently from each other and have different characteristics. Most variants do not change how the virus behaves and many disappear.“We know that viruses mutate to live and live to mutate,” Traxler said. “That’s why it’s critical that we all continue to do our part by taking small actions that make a big difference. These include wearing our masks, staying at least six feet apart from others, avoiding large crowds, washing our hands, getting tested often, and when we can, getting vaccinated. These are the best tools for preventing the spread of the virus, no matter the strain.” DHEC, in coordination with the CDC, will continue to watch out for COVID-19 variants. Public health officials will provide more information as it becomes available.

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced Thursday the detection of two cases associated with the SARS-CoV-2 variant that first emerged recently in South Africa. These are the first two cases of this variant in the United States.

South Carolina public health officials said they were notified late Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of a South Carolina sample that was tested at LabCorp and determined to be the B.1.351 variant originally identified in South Africa.

MORE NEWS:

Also, DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory tested samples on Jan. 25 and Wednesday identified a separate case of the same variant.

Since June 2020, DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory has been performing tests of random samples in order to identify any instances of the variant viruses.

Watch the full news conference below:

DHEC’s Public Health Laboratory will continue to conduct this important sampling to identify any other changes in the virus.

DHEC said experts agree that existing vaccines work to protect us from this variant, even if we don’t know precisely how effective they are.

At this time, there’s no evidence to suggest that the B.1.351 variant causes more severe illness, DHEC said.

“The arrival of the SARS-CoV-2 variant in our state is an important reminder to all South Carolinians that the fight against this deadly virus is far from over,” said Dr. Brannon Traxler, DHEC Interim Public Health Director. “While more COVID-19 vaccines are on the way, supplies are still limited. Every one of us must recommit to the fight by recognizing that we are all on the front lines now. We are all in this together.”

At this point in time, there is no known travel history and no connection between these two cases, DHEC said. DHEC said both are adults; one from the Lowcountry and one from the Pee Dee region.

The B.1.351 variant has been identified in more than 30 countries but these are the first cases of this variant identified in the United States. Other states have had cases of another, called B.1.1.7, originally identified in the United Kingdom. Both variants originally detected in the United Kingdom and South Africa spread easier and quicker than the majority of SARS-CoV-2 variants.

The South Africa and United Kingdom variants emerged independently from each other and have different characteristics. Most variants do not change how the virus behaves and many disappear.

“We know that viruses mutate to live and live to mutate,” Traxler said. “That’s why it’s critical that we all continue to do our part by taking small actions that make a big difference. These include wearing our masks, staying at least six feet apart from others, avoiding large crowds, washing our hands, getting tested often, and when we can, getting vaccinated. These are the best tools for preventing the spread of the virus, no matter the strain.”

DHEC, in coordination with the CDC, will continue to watch out for COVID-19 variants. Public health officials will provide more information as it becomes available.


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