This State Could Shut Down Due to the New COVID Strain, Governor Says

"Hopefully 21 days of a closed economy will slow the spread... That is what we are looking at," he said.

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With two new highly contagious strains of COVID recently identified—the U.K. strain and the South African strain—the U.S. is on high alert for a surge in new infections. However, officials in one state—New York—say it's particularly susceptible to a shutdown if the U.K. COVID strain spreads quickly. Read on to discover what the state's leadership has to say about how long New York could be shut down due to COVID in the near future. And for more insight into where the virus is surging, check out This Is How Bad the COVID Outbreak Is in Your State.

The recently identified B.1.1.7 COVID strain took under a month to shut down the U.K., leading New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to announce during a Jan. 7 press conference: "If the U.K. spread catches on in New York, hospitalization rate goes up, the hospital staff is sick, then we have a real problem and we're at shutdown again." As of Jan. 8, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that New York State has one confirmed case of the B.1.1.7 COVID variant, but the number could be higher seeing as the only way to identify the strain is through sequencing—and, according to the CDC, only a fraction of U.S. cases (about .3 percent) have been sequenced.

In a Jan. 8 press conference, Cuomo reiterated just how quickly the new variant could spread, calling it the "Usain Bolt of infection rates." He added, "The U.K. strain is here…and it's spreading. This infection rate is frightening."

While New York is receiving 300,000 COVID vaccines a week, Cuomo explained that it would take 47 weeks to hit the 75 percent threshold for herd immunity in the state. "You know what that means? We lose the foot race. Hospitals are overwhelmed. We don't win that race," the governor added.

Cuomo cautioned that, if the infection rates in New York continue to rise, it won't be long before businesses are forced to close their doors. "If the hospital capacity continues to climb, we're going to close regions," Cuomo announced. "Hopefully 21 days of a closed economy will slow the spread somewhat… That is what we are looking at."

New York isn't the only state where B.1.1.7 is spreading, however. Read on to discover where else the U.K. COVID strain has been identified—from least cases to most—according to the CDC, as of Jan. 8. And if you're preparing to get vaccinated soon, know that Dr. Fauci Just Gave This Warning About COVID Vaccine Side Effects.

Read the original article on Best Life.

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Texas

A nighttime view of the Tarrant County Courthouse in Fort Worth, Texas, from the middle of Main Street.
PierceHSmith / iStock

Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 1

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Pennsylvania

City view from Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
peeterv / iStock

Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 1

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Georgia

Atlanta Georgia at sunset
Shutterstock

Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 1

And for expert insight on what to expect next during the pandemic, The CDC Just Issued This Grim Warning About the COVID Surge.

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Connecticut

Bushnell Park in Hartford, Connecticut
DenisTangneyJr / iStock

Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 2

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Colorado

Denver Colorado skyscrapers snowy Longs Peak Rocky Mountains summer
iStock

Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 3

And for the latest COVID news delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

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Florida

cityscape photo of river and broad walk in Jacksonville, Florida
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Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 22

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California

city skyline of and Lake Merritt in Oakland, California at dusk
iStock

Number of confirmed B.1.1.7 cases: 32

And for more insight into the virus' spread, check out Dr. Fauci Just Said This State's COVID Situation Is "Unimaginable."

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