Spain confirms first cases of 'more transmissible' UK coronavirus variant
- Madrid has confirmed 4 cases of new variant identified in the UK
- More than 50 countries banned all UK arrvials earlier this month
- All 4 cases involved people traveling from the UK
At least four cases of a new and more infectious coronavirus variant that recently emerged in Britain have been confirmed in Madrid, the regional government said on Saturday. These are the first cases of the new variant detected in Spain, AFP reported.
All four cases involved people who recently arrived from the United Kingdom, the Madrid regional government’s deputy health chief Antonio Zapatero told in a news conference.
"The patients are not seriously ill, we know that this strain is more transmissible, but it does not cause more serious illness," Zapatero said.
"There is no need for alarm," he added.
There are another three suspected cases of the coronavirus variant but the results of tests will only be available on Tuesday or Wednesday, Zapatero said.
The new strain of the virus, which experts fear is more contagious, has prompted more than 50 countries, including Spain, to impose travel restrictions on the UK.
Madrid has since Tuesday banned all entries from the United Kingdom except for Spanish nationals and residents.