Dear Editor: “Progress in driving COVID-19 numbers down in Wisconsin could be ‘undone’ by new variants” (Feb. 10, 2021) sounds the alarm on dangerous COVID-19 variants. Problematic overseas mutations are present in over 40 states. It’s imperative that we track them. Thankfully, Sen. Tammy Baldwin introduced legislation to provide $2 billion for gene-mapping technology to analyze virus samples.
We should also consider how COVID-19 unchecked worldwide favors viral mutations. The U.S needs to step up our role in reducing global infections or we will promote a cycle where variants emerge faster, including variants that increase transmission rates or evade vaccines.
Rep. Mark Pocan, Sen. Ron Johnson, and Sen. Tammy Baldwin should urge congressional leadership to join the global response to COVID-19 by immediately providing $4 billion to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria as well as fully funding the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator with $4 billion.
Cynthia Changyit Levin
St. Louis, Missouri
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