Thursday, 29 Jul 2021

Philippines detects first local transmissions of Delta variant of coronavirus

MANILA (REUTERS) – The Philippines has detected its first locally acquired cases of the more infectious Delta coronavirus variant, its Health Ministry said on Friday (July 16), with one person dying from the disease.

Of the 16 new Covid-19 cases with the Delta variant, 11 were tagged as locally acquired cases, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told a news conference.

One person had died after being rushed to a hospital in capital Manila on June 28, she said.

Five of those who tested positive were Filipinos returning from the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Britain.

The Philippine authorities are scrambling to try and stop the variant from spreading in the community after it triggered an upsurge in infections across the region.

The variant, first detected in India, has been blamed as the key factor for a surge in cases in neighbouring countries, including Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

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