COVID19 Variant might have been in US by Dec 2020, says Report

The new more transmissible coronavirus variant which was first discovered in Britain, was likely to have been present in the US by December 2020, and could already be in every American state now, a media report said.

The report posted on the Business Insider website on Wednesday said that more than 30 cases of the new variant have been reported in the five states of California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia and New York.

“But in all likelihood, the variant entered the US long before these infections were detected and has been spreading silently for weeks,” it said. Charles Chiu, a professor of infectious diseases at University of California, San Francisco, was quoted in the report as saying that the variant “is circulating in our community now” as none of the infected people have recently travelled abroad.

Chiu said that the variant was introduced into the country “in early December or shortly afterwards”, and “it’s very likely that it’s in every state”, according to the report. The professor also noted that it was “unlikely” that the new virus strain contributed hugely to the recent spike of Covid-19 cases in the US.