DOH confirms local transmission of BA.5 omicron subvariant

The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed on Saturday the local transmission of BA.5 omicron subvariant of COVID-19 in the country.

DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told the reporters that there is already a local transmission following the announcement on Friday that they detected two cases of the said omicron subvariant.

The two detected cases of BA.5 omicron subvariant are a 39-year-old female and a 51-year-old male, who are both from Region III.

“Sila po ay nagtravel sa Bulacan during the time of the elections para bumoto tapos may mga binisita rin po sila at pumunta sa trabaho nila dito sa NCR. Then, they got their cough and colds noong May 15 po kung saan nagpa-RT-PCR na sila agad. Lumabas po ‘yung resulta positibo po sila, so they had their isolation from May 16 to 30,” Vergeire said during Laging Handa public briefing.

“So sa ngayon po, pareho sila wala na silang sintomas. They have recovered already. They are both fully vaccinated with booster doses. ‘Yung pong kanilang close contacts ay dalawang households lang kung saan ang isa po ay nagpositibo at naka-isolate pa rin hanggang sa ngayon,” she added.

According to Vergeire, the said persons tested positive despite having no travel history outside of the country.

Moreover, the Undersecretary clarified that there is no community transmission of the said omicron subvariant.

“Sa ngayon po, we cannot say that there is really a community transmission because if we say community transmission hindi na po natin nakikita isang linkage ng isang kaso sa isang kaso pa. Ngayon po nakikita pa naman natin what we have right now is the local transmission of the subvariants but the community transmission, we still need to establish that through evidences,” she said.

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