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DOH says premature to declare local transmission new COVID-19 variant

The Department of Health (DOH) and experts said that it’s still premature to declare that there’s already community transmission of the new reported cases of the UK coronavirus disease variant in the country.

Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) director Dr. Celia Carlos said it is “premature” to conclude that there is local transmission following the confirmation of 16 more cases of the new variant in an online briefing.

The RITM official said that there are certain criteria that must be met before a local transmission is declared but so far investigation is ongoing.

“Considering that investigation is ongoing it may be premature to say whether there’s an ongoing community transmission,” Carlos said.

“Right now there is no evidence of that dahil mayroon tayong isang cluster lang at alam natin na magkaka-related sila and we have to find one person na common source,” Dr. Edsel Salvana, a DOH adviser said.

The DOH said that there are now a total of 17 UK COVID-19 cases in the country. Majority of them, 12 patients, were detected in the municipality of Bontoc, Mountain Province.

The first recorded case of the UK variant was recorded last January 7 from a 27 year-old male who arrived from Dubai from a business trip.

Staff Report

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