THERE is no recorded Covid-19 Delta variant in the country so far, although the risk of it entering is high, says Pandemic Response deputy controller Dr Daoni Esorom.
He was responding to claims that it could be in the country already but yet to be detected because of the low level of testing.
Dr Esorom said the National Covid-19 Control Centre would announce any new variant discovered here.
He agreed that more testing needed to be done to pick up cases so that positive samples could be sent for genome sequencing to prove whether PNG has another variant. He said Australia and Fiji were currently in lockdown because of the surge in the number of the Delta variant cases.
Particular attention too is on Indonesia, which shares borders with PNG. It recorded 22,467 new cases of the Covid-19 on Wednesday, mostly the Delta variant and 463 deaths, all attributed to the same variant.
“This variant is different to the original virus,” Dr Esorom said.
“Some studies show that its efficiency of transmission is 60 to 70 per cent. It transmits very fast and can result in a lot of sick people and a lot of hospitalisation.
“According to the immunological curve, our trends are going down. But with the Delta variant, it will track up very fast if we don’t do anything.”
The National / PNG health Watch
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