February 4, 2021 12:00:45 pm
The Kansas health department says a more contagious variant of the coronavirus first identified in Great Britain has arrived in the state.
The health department reported Wednesday evening that a case of the variant had been identified in Ellis County in northwestern Kansas. The department said officials are conducting an investigation to determine how the patient contracted the virus and whether other people were exposed. It did not release details about the patient.
Health department head and Dr. Lee Norman said the public health advice about avoiding large gatherings, wearing masks and maintaining social distancing has not changed.
The arrival of the variant comes with Kansas seeing an improvement in its COVID-19 case numbers. According to state health department data, Kansas averaged 914 new confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases a day for the seven days ending Wednesday, the first time the rolling seven-day average was below 1,000 since October 28.
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