The United States is reportedly spending a whopping $1.7 billion to help fight off a bunch of coronavirus variants that have been smashing the country, according to officials inside the Biden administration.
About $1 billion is set to fund the expansion of “genome sequencing” to help identify COVID-19 mutations and to monitor variations of the illness, while another $400 million will be used to help create six Centers of Excellence in Genomic Epidemiology.
Another $300 million will go toward building and supporting a “National Bioinformatics Infrastructure” to help “connect the dots between how pathogens spread and mutate to help solve outbreaks.”
Original COVID-19 strains are responsible for “half” of all U.S. cases, and “new and potentially dangerous strains” of the virus are gaining prominence in the country, according to the Biden administration.
“An essential component of the response to the emerging COVID-19 variants is increasing the country’s genomic sequencing — the process by which COVID DNA is decoded and potentially deadly mutations in the virus are detected,” the president’s cohort wrote.
The funding totals were broken down by state, and California, with its $17,091,936 haul, is set to receive the most money. Texas was a close second with $15,555,044, followed by Florida, which will receive $12,699,436. Money will also be given to Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, Palau, the Northern Mariana Islands, and Micronesia, among others.
There are several variants present in the U.S., most of which are more transmissible than the original strain. The B.1.1.7 mutation, which was first found in the United Kingdom, has become the dominant strain in the country as of April. It is estimated to be 70% more transmissible than the strain that commenced the pandemic.
Several other variants, like ones from South Africa, Brazil, and California, have caused problems all across the United States. The strain from South Africa is 50 percent more transmissible than the original, while California’s are allegedly 20 percent more contagious.
This is a lot of bread being poured into this particular project. How do we know the money will be wisely used and not just disappearing into the ether? We don’t. We’re just supposed to trust the government to get the job done right.
The same government that runs the DMV.