DOH DETECTS ADDITIONAL LOCAL AND RETURNING OVERSEAS FILIPINO OMICRON CASES

Press Release | 19 January 2022

The Department of Health (DOH), the University of the Philippines - Philippine Genome Center (UP-PGC), the University of the Philippines - National Institutes of Health (UP-NIH), and the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) report that of the 714 samples sequenced, 492 Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant cases (68.9%), 115 Delta (B.1.617.2) variant cases (16.1%), and one Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant case (0.1%) were detected in the latest batch of whole genome sequencing done last January 13-14, 2022.

OMICRON VARIANT CASES:

The 492 Omicron variant cases are composed of 332 local cases and 160 Returning Overseas Filipinos (ROFs). Of the 332 local cases, the indicated addresses of the cases were from the National Capital Region with 227 cases, CALABARZON with 76 cases, Central Luzon with 11 cases, Central Visayas with five (5) cases, while there were two (2) cases each from Cagayan Valley, Western Visayas, Davao Region, SOCCSKSARGEN, and the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), and one (1) case each from Ilocos Region, MIMAROPA, and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Based on the case line list, three (3) cases are still active, two (2) cases have died, 467 cases have been tagged as recovered, while there are 20 cases whose outcomes are still being verified.

This update brings the total number of confirmed Omicron variant cases to 535.

DELTA VARIANT CASES:

Of the additional 115 Delta variant cases, 88 were local cases and 27 were ROFs. Based on the case line list, two (2) cases are still active, two (2) cases have died, 107 have been tagged as recovered, while there are four (4) cases whose outcomes are still being verified.

This update brings the total number of confirmed Delta variant cases to 8,612.

ON ALPHA VARIANT CASES:

The additional one (1) local Alpha variant case has been tagged as recovered.

The total number of Alpha variant cases is now 3,170.

With the high transmissibility of the Omicron variant and the increasing number of COVID-19 cases, the DOH urges the public to follow protective health protocols and adhere to minimum public health standards. New protocols based on science and data such as shortened intervals for booster shots, childhood vaccination, shortened quarantine/isolation periods for fully vaccinated HCWs without symptoms, and targeted testing among others were put in place to mitigate the risks of the Omicron variant. The public is strongly encouraged to comply to ensure the safety and protection of the entire community.    

Lastly, the Department encourages all eligible individuals, especially senior citizens, those with comorbidities, and children to complete their primary series of vaccines and get boosted as these are safe, effective, and free. Getting vaccinated is still our best line of defense when it comes to fighting and preventing severe and critical disease. Regardless of the variant, we must always keep our guards up against the enemy that is COVID-19.

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