No new COVID variant in PH yet, assures DOH
MANILA, Philippines — There is yet no new strain of coronavirus in the Philippines, the Department of Health said Monday, citing the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM).
In a press briefing, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they already asked the RITM to make a confirmation on this, amid reports of a new coronavirus strain in the United Kingdom.
“We’ve coordinated with the RITM regarding this matter when we received the report and accordingly, according to the RITM, sa ngayon, wala pa silang nakikitang bagong strain na mayroon tayo dito sa ating bansa based on their monitoring,” Vergeire said.
(We’ve coordinated with the RITM regarding this matter when we received the report and accordingly, according to the RITM, right now, they do not see a new strain of the virus in our country based on their monitoring.)
“But of course, we will be furthering this monitoring. Baka nga kung sakali, kailangan natin mapag-igting para kung mayroon mang ganyan sa ating bansa, ma-identify natin. Pero sa ngayon, wala pa according to RITM,” she added.
(But of course, we will be furthering this monitoring so we can strengthen our measures in the event that there is a new strain in our country. But right now, there is none according to RITM.)
Meanwhile, Vergeire said there are already travel restrictions imposed by the UK government.
European Union ambassadors will hold a crisis meeting in Brussels on Monday on travel restrictions to the UK after the emergence of a new coronavirus strain there suspected to be very infectious.
Several EU countries — Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, and the Netherlands — have announced the suspension of air links, and in some cases rail and ferry links, with Britain.
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