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DOH reports local transmission of Omicron XBB subvariant, XBC variant

The Department of Health (DOH) on Friday said there are localized community transmission of Omicron XBB subvariant, XBC variant in some areas in the country.

“May nakikita tayong datos na nagsusuporta na localized yung community transmission (We have seen data supporting the community transmissions are localized),”  DOH Epidemiology Bureau Director Alethea de Guzman said at a press briefing.

Local transmissions of the XBB subvariant were observed in Western Visayas, according to De Guzman. For the XBC variant, local transmissions were also seen in Davao and Soccsksargen, De Guzman said.

These local transmissions were not linked to each other, she added.

“For us, we say na it's localized kasi hindi siya buong bansa. Hindi namin madeklara na may community transmission sa buong bansa but in selected regions there is already,” she said.

(We say that the transmission is localized because it does not cover the entire country. We cannot declare there is a community transmission in the whole country but in selected regions there is already.)

The DOH reported 81 cases of XBB in Western Visayas and Davao Region. Of which 75 have recovered, three are still in isolation, while the condition of three is still being verified.

There is no reported death due to XBB so far.

Meanwhile, 193 cases of XBC were reported in 11 regions: Cagayan, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Davao, Soccsksargen, Cordillera, Caraga, Bangsamoro, and Metro Manila.

Of the 193 XBC cases, 173 have already recovered, three are still in isolation, while the outcome of nine is still being verified.

Five XBC cases have died so far and two of them were unvaccinated, one was vaccinated, while the vaccination of the remaining two are still being verified.

Experts from the DOH said that there is no need to impose border control in affected areas because the infections are already present in different regions.

Despite the presence of the XBB and XBC, DOH experts supported continuing the conduct of full face-to-face classes in campuses in November, but advised the observance of health protocols. —LBG, GMA News