By Greg Argos

BUCKS COUNTY, Pa. (CBS) — There is growing concern over a new strain of the coronavirus that’s been detected in the United Kingdom. Health experts say it could be more contagious.

As a result, many countries in Europe are cutting off travel and trade to the United Kingdom.

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Here at home, a local doctor says while we should pay attention to this new strain, we should not panic.

The new strain of COVID-19 discovered in Great Britain is causing panic throughout Europe.

Travelers were trying to flee London before the U.K. went into a strict lockdown Sunday, after that mutant strain of the coronavirus. Experts say the strain is 70% more contagious than other strains and caused cases there to spike.

“It is with a very heavy heart I must tell you, we cannot continue with Christmas as planned,” said Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

“What we’re really seeing here is this 70% number has just come from a mathematical model,” said Dr. Jose Torradas, an emergency room physician from Bucks County.

Dr. Torradas says don’t panic and remember viruses like COVID change on a regular basis.

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“They’re constantly mutating into something different, which is why we get a different flu vaccine every year,” he said. “Just because it’s more contagious does not make it more deadly.”

But what about the two vaccines currently being administered worldwide? Will they work against this new and more contagious strain?

“You’ll have to see many, many mutations, which likely will not occur for years before it affects the vaccine to a level where it’s no longer efficacious,” Dr. Torradas said.


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