The World Health Organization (WHO) said Wednesday that the Omicron variant of COVID-19 may soon replace Delta as the Philippines’ dominant variant.
In a broadcasted public briefing, WHO Philippine representative Dr Rabindra Abeyasinghe noted that it would be challenging to determine soon which variant is predominant since there are “very few” sequencing results from other regions.
“We believe that in the near future, Omicron will displace Delta variant as the predominant variant as it has done in several other countries,” Abeyasinghe explained.
He added: “The last batch of samples were largely from NCR (National Capital Region) and from returning overseas Filipinos who tested positive and so, it’s not surprising that among the ROFs and also in NCR that we are seeing now Delta variant being displaced by the Omicron variant.”
Meanwhile, Philippine Genome Center chief Dr Cynthia Saloma said many Delta variant cases were still detected in the sequencing run last December.
Abeyasinghe added that it was difficult to identify whether the country is now at the height of a case surge or further increase in cases can be expected.
“We are seeing that the incubation period in Omicron is lower than with the Delta and with the various type. And so, this progresses much faster and develops much faster,” he said.
With this, the WHO representative reminded the public to help curb the spread of the virus by strictly following the minimum public health standards. – WhatALife.ph