MANILA - Eighteen out of 47 patients who contracted the virulent Delta variant were unvaccinated against COVID-19, the Department of Health said Friday.
Only two of them have completed the 2-dose regimen while 4 have received the first dose, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a news briefing.
The agency is still verifying the vaccination status of the remaining 23 cases. It was not clear what brand of the anti-virus jabs the 6 patients received.
The Delta variant, which first emerged in India and has now become the dominant strain worldwide, has claimed 3 lives in the Philippines. Some 36 patients have recovered from the disease while 8 are still considered active cases.
The DOH did not disclose if those vaccinated were among the fatalities or active cases but noted that most patients who received COVID-19 vaccines only suffered from mild symptoms of the disease.
Of the country's 47 cases of the Delta variant, Vergeire said 24 were returning overseas Filipinos, 22 were local cases and 1 was still undetermined.
Majority of the patients or 76 percent were men belonging to ages between 14 to 79, she added.
Of the local cases, 7 patients were found in Metro Manila, including Manila, Pasig, and Taguig; 6 in both Central Luzon, including Bataan, and Northern Mindanao; and 2 in both Calabarzon, including Laguna, and Western Visayas.
Vergeire bared that clusters of infection were reported in Northern Mindanao and Antique, which were linked to a worker and a returning overseas Filipino.
“Nakita na po natin ‘yung cluster of infection sa Northern Mindanao, nakita po natin na ito ay family cluster. Nakita rin po natin na meron din cluster of infection dito sa Antique,” she said.
(We saw a cluster of infection in Northern Mindanao, which is a family cluster. We also saw a cluster of infection in Antique.)
The 12 new local cases of Delta variant, which the DOH reported Thursday, will also undergo retesting.
"That’s our protocol, actually. When we detect this variant, ang ginagawa po natin, binabalikan po natin ‘yung mga individuals that were identified to have this Delta variant at atin po silang nire-retest (what we do is we retest those identified with Delta variant) and then we quarantine them until we can get their results," Vergeire said.
The Philippines, which has recorded over 1.5 million COVID-19 cases, has administered more than 15.9 million COVID-19 vaccine doses.
Of the total, more than 5 million individuals or 8.67 percent have so far been fully vaccinated. At least 58 million individuals are being targeted for vaccination this year to achieve herd protection against the coronavirus.