coronavirus COVID-19 variant

HARRISBURG, Pa. - The new COVID-19 variant first discovered in the UK has made its way to Pennsylvania.

Someone in Dauphin County, which is near Harrisburg, tested positive for the variant, the first confirmed case in Pennsylvania, said the state Department of Health in a news release Thursday.

The person had known international exposure, and suffered mild symptoms, but has since recovered, officials said. Contact tracers have reached out to anyone who was in close contact with the person.

“Pennsylvania has been preparing for this variant by working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and has been sending 10-35 random samples biweekly to the CDC since November to study sequencing and detect any potential cases for this new COVID-19 variant,” said Dr. Rachel Levine, state health secretary, in a statement.

Health officials have said they think the current vaccines will be effective against the new variant, and that COVID-19 tests will detect the new variant as well.

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