New York – On Monday there was a confirm case of the presence of a new strain of the coronavirus that’s believed to be at least 50 percent more contagious.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that a man in his 60s living in upstate New York has tested positive for the U.K. strain of the coronavirus, known as B.1.1.7., on a press call Monday afternoon.
The Saratoga County man had not traveled recently, leading state officials to believe he got the virus through community spread, Cuomo said. “He was symptomatic, but he is on the mend and he’s doing better,” Cuomo added.
The governor says the man is linked to a jewelry store in Saratoga Springs. He advised anyone who had contact with N. Fox Jewelers at 404 Broadway between Dec. 18-24 to get tested immediately. (The store has been closed since Dec. 24).
State health officials are already aware of at least three other people sick with COVID-19 connected to the store, but they have yet to be confirmed for the new variant, Cuomo said. The test samples from each will be examined for the virus and contract tracing out from the jewelry store is already underway.
At least three other states have recently confirmed the presence of the new virus: Colorado, California and Florida. The first U.S. case of the U.K. virus was detected by health officials in Colorado at the end of December in a man in his 20s who also had no recent travel history.