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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Omicron Covid-19 variant scares

Southern Leyte has no recorded case of the newly discovered Omicron variant, as of this writing, according to Provincial Health Officer Dr. Feliciano John Matibag, after the new Covid-19 strain was reported to have infected several individuals in other countries.
The Philippines has temporarily suspended inbound flights coming from different countries that manifest infection of Omicron like Canada, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique, Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium and Italy, until December 15, 2021.
“I highly recommend that Manila should be strict in restrictions and monitoring to prevent the virus from entering the country. Always maintain social distancing and wear facemasks, even if Omicron variant is still not in our province, Governor Damian Mercado says during the Provincial Inter-Agency Task Force virtual meeting last December 2.
The Omicron variant which is scientifically known as B.1.1.529 is a new strain of Covid-19 which is classified as “variant of concern” by the World Health Organization (WHO), and was first reportedly detected in South Africa, and is now detected in more than 20 countries. In a statement by WHO, the variant has an unusual high number of mutations and could result in immune evasion.
Mvuyisi Mzukwa, the vice chair of the South African Medical Association, said that Omicron is having a severe impact on approximately 90% of unvaccinated individuals.
White House COVID adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said that the many mutations of Omicron, although some of these mutations are also found in the Delta variant, is something different. Dr. Fauci warned that “these mutations have been associated with increased transmissibility and immune evasion.”

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