MANILA - The Department of Health (DOH) on Monday said it has detected 9 carriers of the B.1.1.7 variant - first found in the United Kingdom - in Cagayan Valley.
"This might explain why cases are increasing in Tuguegarao," Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in an online press conference.
"We will submit samples for whole genome sequencing para makita natin 'yung trend kung bakit kaya tumataas' yung cases sa kanilang lugar," she said.
As of May 16, the Cagayan region has reported 2,835 active cases, nearly all of which are residents of Cagayan province and Isabela.
Studies earlier showed that the UK variant had a reproduction rate 1.35 times higher than normal coronavirus variants.
Adequate COVID-19 vaccines have been deployed to the region and their utilization rate is also high, Vergeire said.
As of May 11, Cagayan received 71,440 doses of COVID-19 vaccines from the national government, according to data from the DOH.
The region has used 94.7 percent of these doses, the DOH said.
So far, 67,653 people from Cagayan have received their first jab, while 10,779 others have been fully vaccinated, it said.