COVID-19 UK variant spreads across parts of US

At least 17 states have reported cases of the highly contagious variant.
2:11 | 01/17/21

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Transcript for COVID-19 UK variant spreads across parts of US
The need for a vaccine is greater every day as that highly contagious uk variant spreads across the country. More than 23 million confirmed cases in this country. Some 226,000 new cases every day. At least 394,000 American lives lost to the virus. 46,000 just since the first of this year. ABC's zohreen shah in hard-hit L.A. Tonight. Reporter: Tonight, the highly contagious uk variant now confirmed in at least 19 states, the CDC fearing it could make the pandemic much worse, saying it could soon become the predominant variant. What we don't know is how treatments are affected by this variant and how the preventive vaccines -- will they work as well? Reporter: In Texas, the state's third variant case found in Dallas, a major transportation hub. In Gainesville, Georgia, northeast Georgia medical center's icu at 200% capacity. Doctors racing to save lives while patients remain on stretchers. We are having to treat patients in the hallways and also in the ambulances. Reporter: At California's rose hills cemetery, the largest in North America, families waiting up to six weeks for burials. When we called the cemetery, we were 102 on the waiting line. Reporter: And the country approaching that grim milestone -- nearly 400,000 lives lost. In Los Angeles, students and teachers mourning the loss of two teachers, Erica brown-atkinson and Nicholas glover. He was a huge presence emotionally but also intellectually. Reporter: And NBA star Karl anthony-towns announcing he has tested positive for covid-19. He's still mourning the loss of seven family members, including his mother, Jacqueline. You're talking to the physical me, but my soul has been -- has been killed off. Reporter: Adding this promise to his family on Twitter -- I will not end up in a box next to grandma and I will beat this. Tom, just tonight we're learning that L.A. County has surpassed 1 million covid cases. Officials here also confirming that the county now has its first case of the uk variant. Tom? Zohreen, thank you for that.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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