Philippines '' intently monitoring'' new COVID-19 variant found in South Africa
The Philippine government is "intently monitoring" the development about the new COVID-19 variant detected in South Africa, acting Presidential Spokesperson Karlo Nograles said on Friday.
"We are intently monitoring the situation. We continue our genomic surveillance on the ground and we also continue the coordination with the World Health Organization (WHO)," said Nograles.
South Africa is in the Philippines' green list.
"We are in communication, constant communication with WHO and monitoring developments on their front especially awaiting their advisories if this variant is considered a variant of interest or a variant of concern. But rest assured that we are monitoring this intently," he said.
"We await any advisory coming from the WHO especially if this will be declared as a variant of interest or variant of concern. But that being said, We monitor this, the DOH and the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) is monitoring this. This is a new development and we continue to actively monitor the situation," he added.
Amid the monitored case of the new COVID-19 South African variant in Hong Kong, Nograles said the alert level in the country can easily be adjusted if needed.
"The alert level systems, we have parameters for that. So we have to follow the parameters. Like what I have announced in our latest IATF resolution, if there is a need to escalate, we will immediately escalate, which is very clear in our resolution," he said.
"We will do the de-escalation every 15th and end of the month. Our monitoring for the alert level system for every area, we do it weekly. But in terms of escalation, if needed we can do it as soon as possible," he added. Robina Asido/DMS