First case of P.1 COVID-19 variant found in Michigan

Posted at 12:03 PM, Apr 01, 2021

BAY COUNTY, Mich. — The first case of the P.1 or Brazil variant of COVID-19 has been identified in Michigan in a Bay County resident.

It was first reported by commercial lab Quest and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services was notified Wednesday, according to a news release Thursday.

Bay County Health Department has been notified and is investigating the individual’s exposure history to try to find the source of the infection.

The county is also confirming appropriate isolation measures, recontacting identified contacts and requiring a full 14-day quarantine period for all close contacts.

“We are concerned about the discovery of another variant in Michigan,” MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel said. “It is now even more important that Michiganders continue to do what works to slow the spread of the virus by wearing their masks properly, socially distancing, avoiding crowds, washing their hands often and making a plan to get the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine once it is their turn. We all have a personal responsibility to slow the spread of COVID-19 and end this pandemic as quickly as possible.”

This is the second new variant of COVID-19 to be identified in Bay County since last week.

The Bay County Health Department has investigated three cases of the B.1.1.7 variant since the first case was identified in the county in March.

No cases of the South African variant have been identified in Bay County as of Thursday, though a case was previously found elsewhere in Michigan.

RELATED: Here's the difference between the U.K. & South African coronavirus variants reported in Michigan

As of March 31, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported 172 confirmed P.1 cases from 22 states. As of March 31, Michigan has also identified 1,468 cases of B.1.1.7 variant infections in 51 Michigan jurisdictions and seven cases of B.1.135 variant infections in six Michigan jurisdictions.

MAP: COVID-19 variants confirmed across Michigan counties