Local health department confirms UK COVID-19 variant found in Greene County, Mo.

Missouri

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – The Springfield-Greene County Health Department announced Friday that a Greene County resident tested positive for the UK variant B.1.1.7 of SARS-CoV-2.

The health department was notified by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.

According to a press release, the person tested positive at the beginning of March. The Center for Disease Control randomly selected their sample as part of their genomic surveillance program. The person had not traveled domestically nor internationally.

The Health Department says a variant has one or more mutations that differentiate it from other variants in circulation. Multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been documented in the United States. The B.1.1.7 variant is classified as a variant of concern by the CDC. The CDC says the B.1.1.7 variant is up to 50% more transmissible.

“We knew that it was only a matter of time before we located the variant in our community,” said Acting Health Director Katie Towns. “We will stay vigilant and watch closely the indicators we are using to monitor the situation currently, including case counts and hospitalizations. Disease will spread as we move toward removing occupancy limitations and now that we have evidence that this variant is in our community, it makes it more important than ever for people to get vaccinated as soon as possible and protect against the severity of illness associated with the variant.”

Multiple studies have shown available vaccines have been proven effective against the B.1.1.7. variant, including one published by Yale University, the Health Department says.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

About FOX 2 News

FOX 2 and KPLR 11 in St. Louis cover the news in Missouri and Illinois. There are over 68 hours of live news and local programming on-air each week. Our website and live video streams operate 24/7. Download our apps for alerts and follow us on social media for updates in your feed.

President Harry Truman said: “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That spirit is alive and well at Fox 2. Our teamwork is on display each and every day.

Our news slogan is: “Coverage You Can Count On.” We quite frankly are too busy to worry about who gets the credit. Our main concern is serving the viewer.

We go where the stories take us. Whether it be Washington, D.C when a Belleville man opened fire during a congressional baseball game practice or to Puerto Rico where local Ameren crews restored power after more than 5 months in the dark.

Coverage You Can Count On means “Waking up your Day” with our top-rated morning show. From 4:00 am-10:00 am we are leading the way with breaking news. But our early morning crew also knows how to have some fun! Our strong commitment to the communities we serve is highlighted with our Friday neighborhood shows.

Our investigative unit consists of three reporters. Elliott Davis focuses on government waste, Chris Hayes is our investigative reporter, and Mike Colombo is our consumer reporter. They work in unison with the news department by sharing resources and ideas.

We continue to cover breaking news aggressively and relied on our seasoned journalists to make a difference with the stories we covered. The shooting of Arnold Police Officer Ryan O’Connor is just one example of that. Jasmine Huda was the only reporter who had exclusive access to the O’Connor family during his amazing rehabilitation in Colorado.

Last, but certainly not least, FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are committed to covering local politics. We host debates among candidates and have the most extensive presidential election coverage. Our commitment to politics isn’t just during an election year. We produce two political shows that air every weekend.

More local COVID-19 maps and stats

Popular

Latest News

More News