The Biden administration said Friday that it's giving states $1.7 billion to trace Covid-19 variants.The money, from the Covid-19 relief package enacted last month, will help the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and governors monitor emerging variants by boosting the country's capacity to sequence the virus's genome and detect mutations, the White House said.“New and potentially dangerous strains" of the coronavirus now structure about half the U.S. cases, the White House said.
Laboratories round the country were sequencing only about 8,000 Covid-19 strains every week in early February, but a previous $200 million investment increased the capacity, allowing the processing of about 29,000 samples every week , the White House said.
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The investment announced Friday will help further that effort.About $1 billion of the cash will go toward expanding genomic sequencing to seek out Covid-19 mutations; $400 million will help launch six new centers to review genomic epidemiology; and $300 million will help build a national system to share and analyze sequencing data.
Health officials said last week that a highly transmissible variant first detected within the uk has become the foremost dominant strain within the us .Health officials have said the key to defeating the circulation and emergence of the variants is vaccinating as many of us as possible against Covid-19. Nearly 38 percent of the U.S. population has received a minimum of one dose of a vaccine, the CDC said, and nearly a 3rd are fully vaccinated, consistent with NBC News' vaccine tracker.
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