After screening over 1,800 SARS-CoV-2 positive samples from a single day, public health experts have made some discoveries about the presence of COVID-19 variants in Ontario.
Overall, 103 of 1,880 samples (5.5%) screened had the N501Y mutation detected.
Public Health Ontario
This initiative analyzed 1,880 COVID-19 positive samples collected in the province on January 20, 2021.
PHO then screened these samples for the presence of the N501Y mutation, which is found in the U.K. variant, South Africa variant, and Brazil variant.
The study found that of these 103 samples, the majority of them (86.4%) were detected in Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit.
Also, only three (2.9%) samples with N501Y detected were from individuals who recently travelled internationally prior to testing positive. None of these were associated with an outbreak, says PHO.
Simcoe Muskoka recently confirmed that as many as 99 new U.K. variant cases had been detected in the area, many of which are linked to the deadly outbreak at Roberta Place long-term care home.
Dr. Karim Kurji, medical officer of health for York Region, has spoken out about how contagious this variant could be, saying that some people had contracted it after two minutes of essential shopping.