Watch: Learn more about COVID-19 variants
In recent weeks, several concerning new coronavirus variants have surfaced around the globe, including:
- A variant called B.1.1.7 that was first identified in the United Kingdom (UK).
- Another variant called B.1.351, first identified in South Aftrica
- A variant called P.1 emerged that was first identified in travellers from Brazil.
All three of these variants have been found in the United States, with variants B.1.351 and P.1 detected in Maryland and Minnesota, respectively, and over 450 cases of B.1.1.7 found in multiple states to date, including Washington.
These variants all appear to spread more quickly than others, which may cause more people to get sick from COVID-19. There is also some data showing variant B.1.1.7 may also increase the risk of death, but more research is needed to know this for sure.
In the video below, Michael Myint, MD, infectious disease specialist and epidemiologist at MultiCare, talks more about these variants, where they are coming from and steps we can take to protect ourselves from getting sick.
Learn more about COVID-19, including up-to-date information about the COVID-19 vaccine, in our COVID-19 Resource Center.
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MultiCare is a not-for-profit health care organization with more than 20,000 team members, including employees, providers and volunteers. Learn more. More stories by this author