Coronavirus has a new variant, and it is already here in Los Angeles County, CA

Saurabh

The Coronavirus disease has mutated yet again, resulting in a new variant. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed on Friday that traces of this variant have been found in cases in Los Angeles County dating back to June.

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Venice Beach, Los AngelesPhoto by Benoit Debaix on Unsplash

In January, the variant "Mu", also known as B.1.621, was discovered in Colombia. It has now been discovered in 39 different countries. The new variant is said to be the variant that may be able to evade vaccine-provided immunity, which has caused international concerns. World Health Organization (WHO) is closely monitoring the variant and it has been added to the World Health Organization's (WHO) list, "Variant of Interest".

“The Mu variant has a constellation of mutations that indicate potential properties of immune escape,” updated World Health Organization (WHO) via its weekly update.

On September 3, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed the presence of Mu variant in Los Angeles County since June. According to an update from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, 167 cases of Mu Variant Coronavirus were reported between June 19 and August 21.

Although preliminary research on the Mu variant revealed that it can evade immunization provided by currently available vaccines, Los Angeles County Health officials have decided to wait for more comprehensive and detailed research to determine whether it is more resistant to vaccines and treatment than other variants, as delta still remains the most dominant strain of the virus in the Los Angeles County.

The Los Angeles Department of Public Health encourages everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated, including children as young as 12 years old. Barbara Ferrer, Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, urged residents to take self-preventive measures to protect themselves and others from virus infection.

“The identification of variants like Mu, and the spreading of variants across the globe, highlights the need for L.A. County residents to continue to take measures to protect themselves and others,” said Ferrer in a statement.

Ferrer also used the opportunity to encourage residents to get vaccinated as soon as possible in order to break the chain of transmission and prevent the virus from mutating into a much more dangerous form.

“This is what makes getting vaccinated and layering protections so important. These are actions that break the chain of transmission and limits COVID-19 proliferation that allows for the virus to mutate into something that could be more dangerous.” said director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Barbara Ferrer.

The California Department of Public Health confirmed 348 Mu variant cases in the state, with 167 cases found in Los Angeles County alone. Ferrer, the director of LAPH, implied that a large number of people are becoming infected daily because a significant number of people keep refusing to be vaccinated.

“It’s important to note we are seeing less transmission across the board in general, but because the Delta variant is so capable of infecting lots of people, we still have very high numbers of people getting infected, And while in L.A. County, you look at our numbers and say we have tons and tons of people vaccinated but we also have tons and tons of people that are unvaccinated a very good reservoir for highly infectious variants.” said director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Barbara Ferrer.

Coronavirus cases in Los Angeles County, on the other hand, have decreased since last week. According to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health's daily COVID-19 update on September 5, there have been 36 new deaths and 2,097 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours. The number of hospitalizations has also decreased, falling below 1600. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health reported 1596 hospitalizations on Sunday, down from over 1708 the previous week.

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Saurabh is a Computer Science & Engineering undergraduate student pursuing his writing interests. He enjoys researching current events/news as well as Evergreen Topics and has also been writing on Medium, Quora and Vocal.

Los Angeles County, CA
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