ALLEGAN, Mich. — State health officials have identified COVID-19 variant B.1.1.7 in Allegan County, according to the Allegan County Health Department.
We’re told a middle-aged individual with no known travel history had been diagnosed with the variant.
"A new variant in our community is concerning since it can be related to higher transmission rates,” says Richard Tooker, Allegan County’s medical director. “Continue to practice strong mitigation strategies including mask wearing, social distancing, hand washing and getting a vaccine as soon as it is available to you. These actions help slow the spread.”
The ACHD says the variant, first detected in the U.K., is 50 percent more contagious than the normal strain, adding that 616 cases of B.1.1.7 have been identified in Michigan as of March 18.
County health officials urge residents to become vaccinated once the vaccine is offered to them and to continue wearing masks, practice social distancing, washing hands frequently and ventilate interior spaces.
A county testing event is scheduled to held Saturday, March 20 at the Allegan County Transportation Building between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
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