Health officials in Ontario confirmed to Narcity that they hadn't found the new U.K. COVID-19 strain in the province. 

The confirmation comes a day after the federal government announced they were cancelling all incoming flights from the United Kingdom for 72 hours because of the new strain.

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We are continuing to actively monitor for SARS-CoV-2 variants.

Public Health Ontario

Public Health Ontario confirmed to Narcity over email that they were aware of the new strain of COVID-19, which the U.K. government believes is more contagious than earlier types of the virus.

But they said more information was needed to find out if it was more contagious or not.

"In terms of transmissibility, there is still more information and research that is needed before we know if the U.K. variant is more transmissible than other variants of the SARS-CoV-2," PHO said.

PHO said they have tested over 4,300 samples of COVID-19 as part of a scientific "surveillance program" that's designed to find new strains of COVID-19, and they have not found the U.K. variant in the province.

And PHO said that current information and data suggest the Ontario's diagnostic testing systems will still be able to pick up the U.K. variant and flag it.

"However, we continue to be cautious and alert to any new evidence that emerges," PHO said.

 
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