By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The Philippines Department of Health (DOH) today reported the detection of additional cases of two Delta (B.1.617.2) variant cases, 132 Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant cases, 119 Beta (B.1.351) variant cases, and three Theta (P.3) variant cases based on the latest whole genome sequencing report.

The Delta variant is a Variant of Concern (VOC) first described in India. The two new cases were in Returning Overseas Filipinos (ROFs) with travel history from Saudi Arabia.

The Alpha variant is a VOC first seen in the United Kingdom. Of the new cases, 125 are local cases, one is an ROF, and six are being verified as to whether these are local or ROF cases. Based on the case line list, 15 cases have died and 117 cases have been tagged as recovered.  The total Alpha cases in the Philippines now stands at 1,217.

The Beta variant is a VOC first seen in South Africa.  Of the additional 119 Beta variant cases detected, 111 are local cases, two are ROFs, and six cases are being verified as to whether these are local or ROF cases. Based on the case line list, three cases are currently active, 104 cases have been tagged as recovered, and 12 cases have died. The total Beta variant cases are now 1,386.

The Theta variant is classified as a Variant of Interest (VOI) which was first seen in the Philippines. The additional three Theta variant cases are local cases and have already been tagged as recovered.

In addition, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Tuesday said the government would impose stricter border controls to prevent the entry of the Lambda Covid-19 strain, a VOI.

The Lambda variant, which reportedly originated in Peru and has spread in 35 Latin American countries, has not yet been detected in the Philippines based on the genome sequencing of the Philippine Genome Center from 7,000 samples.

Duque noted that border controls have so far been effective, particularly against the highly infectious Delta variant with no local case or local transmission recorded yet in the Philippines.

Through July 6, the Philippines has recorded 1,445,832 total COVID-19 cases, including 25,296 deaths.

To date, 12 million doses of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccines have been administered as of Tuesday, according to National Task Force Against Covid-19.


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