Deaconess- Coronavirus Variants are Here, But Not All of Them

Feb 25, 2021

Credit Facebook Live frame capture

Deaconess Hospital officials Thursday updated the coronavirus variants we’re seeing here and talked about whether we can keep other variants out of the Tri-State. 

Deaconess President Dr. James Porter says the best way to keep potentially more dangerous coronavirus variants from impacting our area is to keep doing what we’re doing. Masking, social distancing and now, getting vaccinated.

Porter appeared with Deaconess’ Director of Microbiology Dr. April Abbott in a Facebook Live Thursday afternoon.  Abbott says so far, they can easily spot a coronavirus variant in local tests.

“We have identified 23 patient samples in which we see this “S” gene dropout where there looks to be a variant. Of those, we had five have been sequenced and of all those that have sequenced, all have been the UK variant.”

Abbott says Deaconess has been doing less coronavirus testing recently because fewer people are scheduling tests. Both she and Porter agree that is probably because we are actually seeing fewer infections in our area.