PH logs 924 new cases of Omicron subvariants

February 8, 2023 People's Tonight 253 views

THE Department of Health (DOH) has detected 924 new cases of the highly-transmissible Omicron subvariants.

In its latest COVID-19 biosurveillance report, the agency noted that there were 1,078 samples sequenced by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine and the University of the Philippines-Philippine Genome Center on Jan. 28 to Feb. 3.

Out of the total samples, 454 or 42.12 percent were classified as BA.2.3.20; 196 or 18.18 percent as XBB (including one case of XBB.1.5; 79 or 7.33 percent as XBC; 28 or 2.60 percent as BA.5 (including six cases classified as BQ.1); seven or 0.65 percent as BA.2.75 (including three cases classified as CH.1.1 and three cases classified as BN.1); and 160 or 14.84 percent as other Omicron sublineages.

“The additional BA.2.3.20 cases were local cases from all regions except Eastern Visayas, while XBB cases were found in all regions except Eastern Visayas and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM),” the DOH said.

“Recently detected XBC cases were local cases from Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Central Visayas, Northern Mindanao, Soccsksargen, Cordillera Administrative Region, and Caraga,” it said.

Of the 28 BA.5 cases, one was classified as a returning overseas Filipino (ROF) while 25 were classified as local cases (including six cases classified as BQ.1) from Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Western Visayas, Northern Mindanao, Soccsksargen, BARMM, Caraga, and the National Capital Region (NCR).

The case type of the remaining two is currently being verified.

The recently detected BA.2.75 cases are all local cases from Cagayan Valley, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Davao Region, and the NCR (including three cases classified as CH.1.1 and three cases classified as BN.1).

On Tuesday, the DOH noted that CH.1.1 is a sublineage of BA.2.75 while XBB.1.5 is a sublineage of XBB.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control has tagged CH.1.1 as variant under monitoring and XBB.1.5 as variant of interest.

However, the World Health Organization (WHO) has not provided specific classifications yet.

The DOH has advised everyone to comply with the usual minimum public health standards, get vaccinated or boosted, and know the individual risk assessment in all activities.

The agency assured the public that it is continuously monitoring these variants and coordinating with the WHO for more guidance.

“Even with these detections of these variants and subvariants, the important indicator is that our hospitals remain to have manageable number of COVID-19 admissions and severe/critical cases are manageable,” it said.

Philippine News Agency