Omicron variant: Pakistan studies first suspected case of recent COVID-19 variant

Omicron variant: Pakistan studies first suspected case of recent COVID-19 variant


A genomic examine is being performed which can affirm the variant, says Sindh well being minister

December 09, 2021

File photo
File picture

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has reported the primary suspected case of the brand new COVID-19 variant Omicron, Sindh Minister for Health and Population Welfare Dr Azra Pechuho stated Thursday.

“A genomic study is being conducted which will confirm the exact variant but for now getting both doses of the vaccine is the best precaution,” she stated in a video assertion issued by the provincial well being ministry.

“We have not yet conducted a genomic study but the way the virus is behaving, it seems likely that it is the Omicron variant,” she stated.  

Separately, the well being division disclosed that the 57-year-old affected person, with no travel historical past, is at present isolating at home, including that efforts are underway to conduct contact tracing to verify whether or not there are extra infections or not.

The affected person was unvaccinated and had no COVID-19 signs. Deputy commissioner East Karachi has been requested to impose a micro sensible lockdown within the space.

“Four persons were tested to confirm Omicron presence out of which results of two returned positive while the report of one patient is awaited,” the assertion stated.

The well being official added that two of them have been despatched home whereas the remaining are nonetheless hospitalised. Only one individual out of those 4 examined had been vaccinated.

NIH clarifies

Meanwhile, the National Institute of Health  (NIH) has clarified that the pattern shouldn’t be but confirmed to be Omicron by way of entire genome sequencing.

The NIH will acquire the pattern for additional testing.

Speaking to Geo Pakistan earlier at this time, Sindh Parliamentary Health Secretary Qasim Siraj Soomro stated that it was imminent that Omicron would reach Pakistan as flights are proceed.

“At the international level, several PCR tests were not positive in patients who were later diagnosed with Omicron infection. The new virus is highly mutated.”

He added that the PCR kits that now we have are centered on the Delta variant.

Steps taken to counter Omicron risk

The nationwide apex COVID-19 physique had already taken measures to regulate the unfold of the Omicron variant within the nation and introduced a large vaccination plan that began from Dec 1.

In a gathering of the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) held earlier this month, it was determined to inoculate booster photographs to immunocompromised individuals, healthcare employees and people aged over 50 years.

The discussion board had additionally tightened travel restrictions banning passengers from 15 international locations together with southern African nations and making COVID-19 testing and vaccination for inbound travellers from Category B international locations.

It was additionally emphasised through the NCOC assembly that the Omicron variant is spreading quick throughout the globe and the one safety towards it’s vaccination and following primary SOPs, together with the sporting of face masks, practising social distancing and washing arms.

The NCOC had agreed to take strict measures concerning the compulsory vaccination regime. It was determined that the vaccination groups needs to be deployed at varied public spots to vaccinate the people on the spot.

The discussion board had instructed the provinces and authorities involved to point out a “zero tolerance” coverage concerning an compulsory vaccination regime.


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