Covid vaccination in the US Photograph:( Reuters )
The B.1.1.7 variant from the UK has infected over 15,000 people in the country, and is also more deadly than the original strain
The contagious COVID-19 variant first identified in the United Kingdom has now spread to all 50 states in the US. Experts believe that this variant could exponentially shoot up the number of cases in the country which is already the worst-affected in the world.
The B.1.1.7 variant from the UK has infected over 15,000 people in the country, and is also more deadly than the original strain. The world is currently racing against time to quickly inoculate populations so that another wave could be averted.
CNN quoted Dr Michael Osterholm, director for the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota as saying that the current vaccines are effective against the variants. But the US may not be able to inoculate every one in time to prevent another outbreak.
The US is vaccinating five times quicker than the global average, and over 40 per cent adults have received at least the first shot.
Osterholm warned that lower income countries with not enough vaccine supplies could become the source of more variants, which could become uncontrollable.
On Monday, the White House announced that by the end of May, the country would have enough vaccines for all Americans. Many states have begun planning a return to normalcy.
So far, the US has recorded 30.8 million cases of COVID-19 - the highest in the world. Over 555,000 people in the country have succumbed to the virus. In the last 24 hours, over 76,000 cases were recorded across the US. The virus has killed 2.86 million people globally.