U.K. variant of COVID-19 found in Denton County

Denton County Public Health announced Wednesday the COVID-19 variant first discovered in the United Kingdom has been identified in the county.

The resident with COVID-19 variant B.1.1.7 lives in unincorporated northeast Denton County and has no recent travel history, according to DCPH. Epidemiologists are conducting a thorough investigation.

“Even as Denton County ramps up the number of vaccinations this week, it is important to remember that everyone should continue to practice the CDC guidelines for social distancing, hand washing, and wearing masks,” said Denton County Judge Andy Eads. “We know these practices work, even as different variants of the COVID-19 virus circulate around the globe. All individuals, with or without a vaccine, should continue following these basic steps to protect the health and safety of everyone.”

The B.1.1.7 variant variant is believed to be more easily transmissible, but research is still ongoing, according to DCPH. Currently, the B.1.1.7 variant does not appear to cause different symptoms or symptoms that are more serious than existing variants. Research shows vaccines are effective against this variant as well.

“The UK B.1.1.7 variant test result here in Denton County underscores what we already know: COVID-19 remains an ongoing pandemic and Denton County has continuing risk,” said DCPH Director Dr. Matt Richardson. “Masks and physical distancing are required as we quickly deploy vaccine every week.”

DCPH also announced Wednesday 621 newly confirmed COVID-19 cases in the county, 539 of which are active, as well as 509 new recoveries. There are now 15,222 active cases in the county.

To minimize spread of COVID-19, DCPH urges all community members to:

  • Maintain at least six feet of physical distance in public settings and when around individuals outside of the household
  • Wear masks or face coverings, which should cover both the nose and mouth, in public settings and when around individuals outside of the household
  • Wash and/or sanitize hands frequently
  • Stay home if you are symptomatic, have recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19, or have pending COVID-19 lab results

Click here for more information about COVID-19 vaccines in Denton County. For additional COVID-19 data including active case information by municipality, hospital capacity, and ventilator utilization, visit dentoncounty.gov/COVIDstats. For information regarding DCPH’s upcoming testing centers, visit dentoncounty.gov/COVID19testing. For additional COVID-19 health and safety recommendations, visit dentoncounty.gov/COVID19.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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