Onslow County officials say variant of COVID-19 found in patient there, concern for future spread

Jacksonville

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Onslow County government officials say a COVID-19 variant was discovered in a patient there.

In a Facebook post on the Onslow County Government site Wednesday, officials said the variant was discovered in a sample taken on Jan. 11 from a person who has since recovered from the virus. Officials said the sample was a random one taken by the State of North Carolina “to do a DNA analysis to determine if there are variants present.”

The statement online read, in part:

“The State of North Carolina randomly selects some of the positive COVID-19 samples to do a DNA analysis to determine if there are variants present. One sample taken January 11 from a person who since recovered from COVID-19 was determined to be the United Kingdom Variant B-117. This variant is thought to be more contagious. Thus far, no other samples have indicated they are from the same variant.”

Onslow County also reported its positivity rate had moved up to 12.4%, with 189 new cases. The state positivity rate is 11.1%

The release of information was made in addition to alerting residents that their phone bank was operational but remains busy with callers. You can contact them at 910-989-5027. However, “appointments are not to be made until the County is assured the additional doses are coming to Onslow County.”

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