Oregon finds third case of highly contagious coronavirus variant – OregonLive

The Oregon Well being Authority mentioned Sunday {that a} third Oregonian has examined optimistic for a brand new, extremely contagious variant of the COVID-19 virus.

Sunday’s case, in Washington County, comes only a day after the state introduced a second Oregon case — in Yamhill County. The primary two sufferers had no identified journey historical past, suggesting the virus is probably going circulating inside the state. Nevertheless, the well being authority mentioned this Washington County affected person has traveled exterior the nation throughout the publicity interval; it didn’t specify the place.

The Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention mentioned Friday that the brand new variant, identified formally as B.1.1.7, has been present in roughly two-dozen states.

The brand new variant unfold quickly in the UK, which led well being authorities to conclude it’s extra contagious. Authorities do imagine that present vaccines probably are efficient towards this mutation.

Oregon recognized its first case of the extra contagious pressure earlier this month, linking it to an worker at the University of Portland.

After spiking final fall and thru the vacations, the variety of coronavirus instances in Oregon has been in sharp decline over the previous 10 days. It’s not clear that pattern will maintain if the brand new variant takes maintain; authorities forecast that the brand new pressure could symbolize a majority of instances inside the subsequent two months.

Well being authorities hope they’ll blunt that unfold by quickly administering vaccines earlier than the brand new variant is widespread.

Correction: This text initially reported that the newest affected person recognized with the mutant pressure had not traveled. The well being authority says this individual does have a journey historical past.

— Mike Rogoway | mrogoway@oregonian.com | twitter: @rogoway | 503-294-7699

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