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First case of the more contagious COVID strain in Louisiana

On Saturday, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that the 'UK Variant' strain of the coronavirus has made its way to Louisiana. Edwards stated that a patient in New Orleans contracted the new strain, which originated in the United Kingdom.

Posted: Jan 18, 2021 9:05 PM
Updated: Jan 18, 2021 9:09 PM

Lafayette, La. - On Saturday, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that the 'UK Variant' strain of the coronavirus has made its way to Louisiana. Edwards stated that a patient in New Orleans contracted the new strain, which originated in the United Kingdom.

Regional Medical Director, Dr. Tina Stefanski, says this new strain is more contagious than the current one. 

"Because this strain does spread more easily from one person to another, it’s even more important, especially for people who are older and people with underlying health problems. To further kind of tighten up their circle of individuals that they are around," said Stefanski.

However, it does not make individuals any more sick than the current strain does.

This new strain may drive up demand for the vaccine now that there are two covid-19 strains. However, supply cannot keep up with the current demand, and Stefanski encourages those who are currently eligible for the vaccine, to get it as soon as possible.

"The people who are 70 and older really should be calling pharmacies, getting on waitlists, monitoring the news and the media. So as more vaccines are available to us as a state, we can very quickly give it out to those people who are most at-risk," Stefanski said.

Regardless of your health condition, everyone should continue to follow the safety guidelines set forth by the CDC, which can be found here.

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