31 cases of UK COVID mutation recorded in New Jersey

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Cases are on the rise in New Jersey of the highly-contagious coronavirus variant that was first discovered in the United Kingdom.

Officials have recorded 31 cases of the B-117 mutation in 11 counties in the Garden State, Department of Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli said Monday.

Twelve of those cases are in Ocean County and three of the total patients had a known travel history, Persichilli said.

On Jan. 22, officials had found only two cases in the state. One person in New Jersey with “significant underlying health conditions” died from the variant less than a week later.

The variant was first detected regionally in New York City on Jan. 4.

“Will the vaccines work against the variants we are hearing about? Well, in most cases yes. They have been found to be very good at stopping severe illness, hospitalization and death,” Persichilli said.

Governor Murphy announced a milestone Monday — more than one million doses of COVID-19 vaccinations have now been administered in the state.

The daily COVID-19 positivity rate was of 8.5 percent as of Feb. 4 in New Jersey, according to officials.

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