CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia will receive $1.88 million from the federal stimulus to track the spread of new COVID-19 variants in the state.

The state has so far confirmed cases of virus variants from the U.K., California and Brazil, mostly concentrated in the northern part of the state and eastern panhandle. Some variants are seen as more infectious and deadly, and officials urge residents to get vaccinated in other to stamp out their spread.

"Several new COVID-19 variants have been found in West Virginia which is concerning because of the higher rate of transmission and mortality," Democratic U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin said in a statement announcing the new funding.

The funding is allocated through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and aims to expand genomic sequencing to identify variants.