DOH tracing close contacts of two NCR persons positive for Omicron sub-variant
The Department of Health (DOH) said it is tracing close contacts of two persons in the National Capital Region (NCR) who tested positive but asymptomatic for the Omicron BA2.12.1 sub-variant of COVID-19.
"They showed symptoms. They are relatives. They were immediately isolated. We are now tracking the close contact from home. Based on our monitoring, they are all asymptomatic," said Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire on Saturday's ''Laging Handa'' virtual public forum.
Vergiere said the Omicron sub variant BA2.12.1 is not yet classified as a variant of concern or variant of interest by World Health Organization (WHO). She noted there were studies which shows that it is 23 to 27 percent more transmissible than than the original Omicron variant.
"Most of these are mild symptoms. That is why in our study, there were no severe cases recorded from BA2.12.1 although in US it triggers the sudden increase of cases in New York where more unvaccinated patients were hospitalized," she said.
Vergeire said 14 cases of the Omicron sub variant BA2.12.1 were initially found in the country, 12 from Palawan.
"In our latest sequencing run we were able to detect 14 cases of this Omicron sub variant BA2.12.1, there were two from NCR and 12 in Puerto Princesa all of them have already recovered. They were all able to isolate completely, and they are fully vaccinated that is why they only have mild symptoms," she said.
Vergiere said the first case recorded in Palawan was detected last April 22 and isolation was immediately done where they are all riding a cruise ship.
"They were tested and immediately isolated. That is why we were able to contain them because they are onboard a cruise (ship) where all of the passengers were isolated and we will be able to complete their isolation," she said. Robina Asido/DMS