DOH-7: Presence of Delta behind rise of COVID cases

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | July 29,2021 - 06:43 PM
DOH-7 director, Dr. Jaime Bernadas. Dr. Jaime Bernadas, director of the Department of Health in Central Visayas, says that they believe that the rise in COVID-19 infections in the region is caused by the Delta variant of the virus. |CDN Digital file photo

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, director of the Department of Health in Central Visayas, says that they believe that the rise in COVID-19 infections in the region is caused by the Delta variant of the virus. |CDN Digital file photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — For the top official of the regional health office in Central Visayas, the presence of the Delta variant in Cebu has confirmed the suspicions they have been holding. 

That the highly transmissible mutation of the SARS-CoV-2 is behind the continuous increase of new COVID-19 cases here. 

The Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7) confirmed reports that 32 COVID-19 patients in the region were infected with B.1.167.2, also known as the Delta variant. 

Of this number, 19 were from Lapu-Lapu City, six from Cebu City, three from Mandaue City, and two each in the towns of Cordova and Samboan.

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, director of DOH-7, told reporters in a press interview on Thursday, July 29, that they believed these patients had already recovered or already recovering from the infection.

Bernadas said their swab specimens were collected last July, and the results were sent back to them last Wednesday evening, July 28. 

“We swabbed them between July 4 to July 10. And 15 days from now, that’s July 14. So, we believed and presumed the patients have already recovered,” he explained in Cebuano. 

With the presence of Delta variant confirmed in Cebu, the DOH-7 official said their hunches were right that the increase of COVID-19 infections here was due to the dreaded virus. 

“It (Delta variant presence) confirmed our theory on the rising cases of COVID-19,” Bernadas said. 

In the meantime, he said they were checking whether the Delta variants detected here were imported cases or brought about by community transmission. 

“We have back-traced all these patients, and we will investigate to see if these are results of local transmission,” added Bernadas. 

DOH-7 has sent around 500 to 600 swab samples they collected from the COVID-19 patients to the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) to see if they are infected with the Delta variant.

As of July 29, the Philippines already tallied a total of 216 cases of B.1.167.2 mutation that was first discovered in India earlier this year.

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TAGS: COVID-19, Delta variant, DOH-7, SARS-Cov-2

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