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Delta variant detected in Taguig City —official

A case of the more transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus has been detected in Taguig City, according to a Dobol B TV report, citing Clarence Santos, head of the Taguig Safe City Task Force.

Santos said this was based on the report of the City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit.

The report said as of July 12, the city has recorded 73 COVID-19 cases, including the Delta variant case.

"Ayon po sa report ng ating City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit, as of July 12 may mga nakita po tayong 73 na mga kaso ng variant ng  COVID-19 dito sa Taguig. Ayon sa report, may isa po tayong kaso ng Delta variant o 'yung nanggaling sa India," Santos said.

He added that 26 cases of Alpha variant, which was first detected in the United Kingdom, and 46 cases of Beta variant have also been reported in the city.

The Department of Health confirmed Taguig City's Delta variant case. However, it clarified that it was not a local infection but simply an OFW who has a permanent residence in Taguig.

The Taguig government, in a press statement, said the “single and isolated” Delta variant case recorded there was “never able to set foot” in the city while he was infected with the highly contagious variant.

“The patient was not released from quarantine until he recovered, and was never able to set foot in Taguig when he was still infected with the virus,” it said.

Based on latest DOH data, 35 cases of Delta variant have been detected in the Philippines with two confirmed fatalities.

The latest DOH figures also included 11 local Delta variant cases, two of them in Metro Manila.

Dr. Rontgene Solante, an infectious diseases expert, said with the detection of local Delta variant cases, it is possible that there is also local transmission.

"Kung meron local cases, may possibility na may local transmission [If there are local cases, there is a possibility of local transmission]," he said in an interview on Unang Balita.

He noted that the Delta variant, which was first detected in India, has a reproduction rate of 4 to 8, meaning one patient can infect four to eight people.

Over the weekend, Dr. Tony Leachon, former National COVID-19 Task Force adviser, said the number of local cases of the Delta variant in the country might be underreported due to limited genome sequencing.

The government is discussing preparations to prevent the further spread of the more transmissible Delta variant. This includes stricter border controls and aggressive contact tracing.

The Philippine National Police also said it will conduct stricter monitoring at quarantine checkpoints.—KBK/AOL, GMA News