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A message from Dr. Helena Swinkels, Office of the Chief Medical Officer; and Marion Guenther, Clinical Nurse Specialist for Immunizations, CDPPH, Office of the Chief Nursing Officer
There has been a lot in the news lately about “variants” of the COVID-19 virus, and many questions are coming in about what they are and how they will affect the pandemic situation.
In this message, we share with you the latest information about the new variants, the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine against them, and the ongoing importance of following public health measures even after getting vaccinated.
What are variants?
To begin with, the term “variant” in this context simply means a strain of the COVID-19 virus that has changed or “mutated.” Although a bit sci-fi- and scary-sounding, all viruses go through changes, including the COVID-19 virus. So, where there are viruses, there will always be variants.