Health officials de-escalate status of Epsilon COVID-19 variant

Public Health Madison Dane County shared that over the last month daily cases are in a steady...
Public Health Madison Dane County shared that over the last month daily cases are in a steady decline.(NBC)
Published: Jul. 2, 2021 at 2:33 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - State health officials announced they will stop tracking the Epsilon variant strain on its dashboard after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention de-escalated its status.

The Department of Health Services reports the CDC deescalated the Epsilon variant, originally found in California, from a variant of concern to a variant of interest. The de-escalation is due to the decrease in the proportion of the variant circulating nationally. Data also indicates that vaccines and treatments are effective against this variant, DHS added.

Currently in the state, researchers have found 649 cases of this strain. In the south central region of Wisconsin, just over 2% of cases tested have come up as the Epsilon variant.

Other groups to note:

  • DHS confirmed 85 cases of COVID-19 in the state Friday, bringing the seven-day average up to 73.
  • There have been nearly 613,000 COVID-19 cases to date in Wisconsin.
  • Health officials report no new deaths on Friday.

Low number of COVID-19 vaccines administered this week

The number of COVID-19 vaccines administered to Wisconsinites going into the holiday weekend is the lowest it has been since the second week of vaccinations in the state.

DHS notes 29,916 vaccines have been given out this week, though the week is not over yet. You would have to go back to Dec. 20, 2020 to find a number lower than that.

Other groups to note:

  • Just over half of the state’s population has received at least one dose and just over 47% have completed their vaccine series.
  • The percentage of Dane Co. 12-15 year olds has officially surpassed the 18-24 group in terms of completing their vaccine series.
  • Six in 10 Dane County 12-15 year olds have received at least one dose of the shot.

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