Canadian health officials announced that there have now been a total of 14 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 UK variant found in the country.
Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, confirmed the cumulative count at a press conference on Friday.
Six of the cases are in Ontario, four are in Alberta, three are in British Columbia, and one is in Quebec, according to a media relations advisor for the Public Health Agency of Canada.
“So far, all cases are individuals with either a history of recent travel from the UK or close contact with an individual with a history of recent travel from the UK,” Maryse Durette told Daily Hive in an email.
In her January 7 COVID-19 update, Tam reported that Canada had seen 11 cumulative cases of the virus strain. She also confirmed that there had been no other variants, such as the one first discovered in South Africa, found in the country.
Data suggests that the COVID-19 UK variant can be transmitted faster than the initial strain of the virus. However, there is no evidence to suggest that the mutation causes more severe illness or that vaccines will be any less effective against it.
“Canada continues to monitor for virus variants that may be associated with an increased risk of spread,” Tam said.