A new strain of coronavirus has not been detected in Wisconsin – at least not yet.
The state’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Ryan Westergaard, said on Tuesday that a relatively small number of COVID-19 tests performed here get the full genome sequencing, which led to discovery of the new strain in the U.K. and South Africa.
“It’s been several thousand that we’ve done this full genome sequencing. So far we have not seen any of the patterns that are identical to the strain that we’re discussing in the UK. But we’re continuing to look for it.”
Westergaard said that doesn’t mean the new strain is not here – which should serve as reminder take necessary actions to prevent spread of coronavirus.
“It’s a relatively small number of viruses that we test for that get the full genome sequencing. So it’s another reminder that we need to be really aggressive and really mindful of preventing transmission of disease everywhere.”
It may possible for the new strain to arrive in Wisconsin undetected. The U.S. ranks 43rd worldwide in sequencing to check for variants of the coronavirus, according to a report in the Washington Post.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has not documented any cases of the British variant in the United States — but experts, even at the CDC, say it’s probably already here, the Post reports.