Navajo Nation identifies first case of California COVID-19 variant

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — The Navajo Nation on Tuesday reported three more confirmed COVID-19 cases and one additional death.

The latest figures bring the pandemic totals on the tribe’s reservation, which includes parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, increased to 30,182 cases and 1,259 known deaths.

On Tuesday, Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez announced the first confirmed case of the COVID-19 B.1.429 variant on the Navajo Nation, which came from a test sample obtained in the Chinle Service Unit area.

The variant was first identified in the state of California and has since been detected across the southwest U.S.

Nez says tribal members should continue to take all precautions to reduce the spread of COVID-19.