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COVID variant presence in PH probed

MEDICAL experts yesterday began investigating the report that there is a possibility that the new COVID-19 variant sneaked into the country after a 30-year-old Hong Kong resident was detected with the virus upon arrival in her home land last December 22.

According to the report issued by the OC|TA Research Group the other day, the passenger returned to Hong Kong allegedly with the new virus after travelling to the Philippines.

But, the Department of Health (DOH) said it has yet to detect the presence of the new coronavirus variant in the country.

Meanwhile, Philippine Airlines has turned over to the Philippine Bureau of Quarantine the necessary information that will enable them to carry out contact tracing among passengers of the PAL flight PR300 that carried the Hong Kong resident on December 22.

Cielo Villaluna, PALspokesperson, said the airline is fully cooperating with health authorities and strictly adheres to vital health and safety protocols to help ensure that air travel is safe even during the pandemic.

“As an additional information, the passenger (whose identity cannot disclosed) presented a negative COVID test before taking the Manila to Hong Kong flight last December 22,” Villaluna said.

Hong Kong requires arriving passengers to preset a negative COVID test. By Willy M. Balasa