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Hong Kong Finds 2 Cases of New Covid Variant Identified in Africa

  • Traveler from South Africa infected neighbor across the hall
  • Valved mask, open hotel room door may have played a role
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What We Know About the New Covid Variant
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Two cases of the new Covid-19 strain raising alarm in parts of southern Africa and unnerving financial markets worldwide have been found in travelers in compulsory quarantine in Hong Kong. 

A traveler from South Africa was found to have the variant -- currently known as B.1.1.529 -- while the other case was identified in a person who’d traveled from Canada and was quarantined in the hotel room opposite his, the Hong Kong government said late Thursday. The traveler from South Africa used a mask with a valve that doesn’t filter exhaled air and may have transmitted the virus to his neighbor when the hotel room door was open, a health department spokesperson said Friday.