Virus variant first identified in India found in Nebraska


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LINCOLN, Nebraska (AP) – Nebraska health officials said an extremely contagious variant of the coronavirus that was first identified in India has been confirmed in the state.

The first case of the virus variant, officially known as variant B.1.617, was found in a Lancaster County resident who has links to international travelers.

The discovery of the new variant comes when the state reported a relatively small number of new virus cases. Nebraska health officials said

On Wednesday, 1,368 new cases of the virus were reported last week, slightly less than the 1,397 cases the previous week.

The seven-day average of new daily cases in Nebraska decreased in the past two weeks, from 249.29 new cases a day on April 27 to 195.43 new cases a day on Tuesday.

The state on Thursday reported 159 new cases of the virus to give Nebraska a total of 222,247 cases and 2,257 deaths since the pandemic began.

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