Ten more cases of the B.1.617.2 variant of COVID-19 or India variant have been detected in the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) reported.
Nine of the newly detected cases were from the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19)-positive Filipino crew of MV Athens Bridge. Four of them are still admitted to a hospital in Manila and are in stable condition while the other five crew members are in an isolation facility.
One of the new cases is a seafarer who came from Belgium. The said seafarer supposedly disembarked in Belgium and flew to Manila via the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He arrived in the Philippines on a flight last April 24, 2021, and completed his isolation period last May 13, 2021.
“The latest sequencing run included the samples from the crew members of the MV Athens Bridge, returning overseas Filipinos (ROFs) with relevant travel history, and deceased severe or critical COVID-19 cases,” said the DOH.
Last week, the MV Athens Bridge made emergency contact in the country for medical evacuation after 12 of the 21 people on board tested positive for the virus.
The ten new cases were added to the two overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from Oman and the United Arab Emirates who tested positive for the B.1.617 variant, bringing the total number of detected cases of the said variant in the country to 12.
Other variants detected were 13 more B.1.1.7 (United Kingdom) variant cases, seven B.1.351 (South Africa) variant cases, and one P.3 (Philippines) variant case from the 37 samples sequenced last May 14, 2021.