Kansas City

How states detect COVID-19 variants – Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri 2021-12-01 18:55:44 –

Kansas City, Missouri — Health leaders say Wednesday with a new Omicron variant of COVID-19 Detected for the first time In the United States. However, most patients never know which SARS-CoV-2 strain has infected them.

So far, doctors have generally used the same treatment for all patients, regardless of which mutant or strain they were infected with. Therefore, knowing the exact strain is not medically necessary at the individual level.

If the Omicron strain resists these treatments, called monoclonal antibodies, that approach can change.

Dr. Dana Hawkinson, director of infection prevention and management at the University of Kansas Health System, said: “The data should be released fairly soon.”

In the meantime, the health department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention want to know the variants that exist in the community to help local leaders develop guidelines such as travel bans, mask obligations, and collection size restrictions. I think.

In Missouri, all COVID-19 positive results are reported to the Department of Health and Human Services. It regularly analyzes about 600 of those specimens for genomic sequencing.A spokeswoman said the state is sharing that information through the CDC. SPHERES Consortium Because sequencing is “understanding which variants are in circulation in the United States, how quickly variants emerge, and which variants are most important for characterizing and tracking from a health perspective. “Deepen”.

In a written statement, a spokesperson explained that the state is working with the CDC. Dynamics, host response, and viral evolution. “

Missouri and Kansas do not send information about individual sequence results to patients or test providers / administrators.

In Kansas, not all positive COVID-19 test results are sent to the Ministry of Health and Environment. In November, the agency sequenced 3.3% of all positive tests received.

Kansas also works with CDC’s SPHERES program. A KDHE spokesperson said in a statement, “Data on circulating predominant strains further enhances understanding by looking at cases, hospitalizations, deaths, the number of breakthrough infections, and trends in the effectiveness of treatments. I will. “

Eurofin-ViracorThe Lee’s Summit laboratory in Missouri has detected strains and mutants with positive COVID-19 test results for vaccine manufacturers who want to know if the vaccine is just as effective against new strains. increase.

Steve Kleiboeker, Chief Scientific Officer, explained that the sequencing process is expensive and time consuming, and it takes about 3-4 days to get results.

Eurofins-Viracor has developed a two-in-one PCR test used in Europe. This enables highly accurate detection of both COVID and new strains.

“You can run these fast and cheap PCR tests and point the arrows at the samples that require sequencing, which is more labor-intensive, time-consuming, and costly,” says Kleiboeker. .. “This is a really classic screening approach. You can take hundreds or thousands of samples and know where to look in the sequence.”

Reed Hildenbrand, a resident of Kansas City, Missouri, was infected with COVID-19 in August. He never knew which strain infected him.

“When I took the test, I asked.” Hey, is it possible to know if this is a delta variant? Is that what I know from my results or something? ” Reed explained his surprise when he learned that it wasn’t part of his result.

Kleiboeker said that there may be days when you need to sequence individually, but it’s too early to say that.

“That could be the next challenge in the future. I don’t know, I’m trying to prepare for any challenge,” said Clyboecker.



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