UK COVID-19 variant found in patients in Hai Duong, Quang Ninh hinh anh 1 A COVID-19 treatment establishment in Hai Duong province (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) - A new and more contagious variant of COVID-19 from the UK was found in patients in the northern provinces of Hai Duong and Quang Ninh, according to the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology.

Eleven out of the 16 samples tested by scientists from the institute has 17 signature mutations of the super-spreader B.1.1.7 strain that was first discovered in the UK in December 2020.

The new virus strain is said to spread more quickly than previous variants of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. It has caused a surge in the number of COVID-19 infections in the UK as well as other European countries. The variant has been present in 60 countries worldwide as of January 17.

The Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City said on February 1 that Patient 1,660 from the northern province of Hai Duong was infected with the B.1.1.7 strain. He is under treatment at the city’s Cu Chi COVID-19 treatment hospital.

Earlier, a female worker from Vietnam Poyun Electronics Co.,Ltd was found with the B.1.1.7 variant when arriving in Japan last month.

The highly contagious coronavirus variant that originate in South Africa was also found in an important case in December 2020, according to the the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology and the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases.

Vietnam has so far recorded 1,851 SARS-CoV-2 infections. Of the total, 964 were locally-transmitted cases, including 271 linked with Hai Duong since the latest coronavirus outbreak hit the province on January 27./.