MANILA (Reuters) – The Philippines has confirmed home transmission of the brand new, extremely contagious British variant of the coronavirus, prompting President Rodrigo Duterte to desert a plan to permit some minors to go outdoors their houses.
“Proper now, we now have native transmission the place this particular person or these circumstances with the variant have already contaminated their neighborhood, their household,” Well being Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire informed information channel ANC on Tuesday.
The world is scrambling to comprise the unfold of the B.1.1.7 variant, regardless of journey bans, new lockdowns and a tightening quarantine measures in dozens of nations, amid issues it couldn’t solely be extra transmissible, however deadlier.
The Philippine well being ministry stated the B.1.1.7 variant had unfold amongst 12 individuals in Bontoc, a mountainous northern province, with 17 such circumstances within the nation.
Its first case of the British variant was present in a Filipino who had travelled from the United Arab Emirates.
Citing the British variant, Duterte stated he had scrapped a plan to permit kids ages 10 to 14 in low-risk areas to go outdoors the house beginning Feb. 1.
The Philippines, which has imposed a number of the world’s hardest coronavirus restrictions, together with inner journey bans, has since March final yr formally prohibited minors from leaving the house.
“I’m afraid as a result of this new pressure strikes the younger kids,” Duterte stated late Monday. “They’ll glue their consideration on TV the entire day.”
The federal government had hoped easing restrictions on kids would possibly enhance financial exercise, after a yr when development is anticipated to have contracted 8.5%-9.5%.
With practically 515,000 coronavirus circumstances and greater than 10,200 deaths, the Philippines is among the many worst affected international locations in Asia.
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