LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) – The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Nebraska Public Health Lab (NPHL) have confirmed the first known cases of the Brazil variant of COVID-19, known as P.1, in the state. Two cases have been identified in Douglas County. Investigations are underway and ongoing. The P.1 variant has been spreading throughout the United States and is likely more contagious, according to DHHS.
According to DHHS, testing platforms like Test Nebraska and others will still produce a “positive” result for the P.1 variant (and other variants). It is expected that vaccinations will remain effective.
DHHS and NPHL have been working to increase sequencing capabilities within the state. Higher volumes of in-state sequencing began in January and NPHL currently has capacity to sequence more than 100 specimens per week.
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