New COVID-19 Variant referred to as the California Variant found in Arizona
A new mutation of the variant that caused outbreaks in California, is being called the California Variant. The variant is now spreading, and experts fear it may be more contagious than even the United Kingdom strain. Since December, Arizona has seen 140 positive COVID samples of the California variant and five of the UK variant. The Arizona Medical Association President, Dr. Ross Goldberg, in an interview with ABC15, said that the way to beat this virus remains the same; our job now is to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus, variant or not variant.
Scientists are hopeful the vaccines work against the new strains, but it is unknown whether Pfizer or Moderna have tested their vaccines against the new California strain. Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) has created a COVID-19 Variant Sequencing Dashboard to make it easier for anyone to keep track of the variants found in Arizona https://pathogen.tgen.org/covidseq-tracker/. TGen is an Arizona-based, nonprofit medical research institute dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life-changing results.
Vaccine Points of Dispensing (PODs) – Spectrum Healthcare’s points of dispensing (PODs) at Findlay Toyota Events Center and Verde Valley Christian Church are canceled through Saturday. They have instituted a Vaccination Station call center for people with more questions about their appointments. The number is 928-414-8884. Patients who are affected by the closures can expect to receive a text, email, and phone call with updated information about their scheduled appointment as soon as the vaccine arrives. Yavapai Regional Medical Center has had to move today’s appointments to the same time on Friday, March 5th at the Prescott Gateway Mall vaccination site. YRMC is awaiting vaccine before making decisions about appointments on Saturday.
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