An individual who had arrived from the United Kingdom (UK) was identified with the new COVID-19 variant which is rapidly spreading in the UK, Chief Epidemiologist of the Academy of Epidemic Diseases Unit Dr Sudath Samaraweera said.
He said the infected person might have arrived in the country a week or two ago.
Investigations in this regard are underway, he said.
Dr. Samaraweera said, while the severity of the infection is lower in the new variant than that of the older virus strain, it can spread rapidly and increase the number of infected patients.
However, increased incidence of the disease may increase the number of fatalities, he added.
The research was conducted by the Sri Jayewardenepura research team headed by Professor Nieelika Malavige.