The first case of SARS-CoV-2 Variant P.1 has been detected in Stanislaus County. This variant was first found in Brazil and has been identified as another variant of concern by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The case is not believed to be travel related.
“This is a reminder that these variants of concern are spreading, and new variants continue to be detected in Stanislaus County,” said Stanislaus County Public Health Officer, Dr. Julie Vaishampayan. “Avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces, wearing a mask, keeping a distance from others, and washing hands often add more layers of protection and stops the spread of this virus.”
The P.1 variant was first detected in the US at the end of January 2021. This variant contains a set of additional mutations that may affect its ability to be recognized by antibodies from previous infections and may increase the chance of reinfection. P.1 variant is an addition to the three other COVID-19 variants previously detected in Stanislaus County. To date, Stanislaus County Public Health has found 26 B.1.1.7, three B.1.351, four B.1.427/B.1.429 variants.
These strains continue to be closely investigated. COVID-19 spread remains substantial in Stanislaus County and community members must follow necessary precautions to stop spread. When choosing to participate in activities, consider the community spread of COVID-19 and the risk level of activities you are participating in. Limit attendance at large gatherings, especially indoors to reduce the risk of spread. Outdoor visits and activities are safer than indoors.
Fully vaccinated people can participate in some indoor events safely, without much risk. With the high transmission rate of the variants, health experts advise that getting vaccinated is an important step to stay safe and fully protected against COVID-19.
Vaccines are available by appointments or walk-ins. Public Health encourages community members to visit MyTurn.ca.gov or call 1-833-540-0473 to find the nearest vaccination site, if they choose to make an appointment. For more information on mobile clinics and other mass vaccination clinic sites, visit www.schsa.org/coronavirus/.
Stanislaus County Public Health continues to work closely with the Emergency Operations Center to address the COVID-19 pandemic through guidance provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the California Department of Public Health, and other partners.
For more information on the cases in Stanislaus County, visit schsa.org/coronavirus.