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Fauci: US taking hard look at variant of coronavirus

U.S. health officials believe the coronavirus mutation that set off alarms in parts of Britain is no more apt to cause serious illness or be resistant to vaccines than the strain afflicting people in the United States
FILE - In this Dec. 22, 2020, file photo Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute...
FILE - In this Dec. 22, 2020, file photo Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, prepares to receive his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, Pool, File)(Patrick Semansky | AP)
Published: Dec. 27, 2020 at 8:14 PM EST
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WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials believe the coronavirus mutation that set off alarms in parts of Britain is no more apt to cause serious illness or be resistant to vaccines than the strain afflicting people in the United States. That’s according to Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Even so, he says the variant still must be taken “very seriously” and is being studied intensively by U.S. officials now.

Fauci endorsed the decision of U.S. officials to require negative COVID-19 tests before letting people from Britain enter the U.S. and declined to weigh in on whether that step should have been taken sooner.