MANILA— The Department of Health (DOH) on Friday said there is still no community transmission of the COVID-19 Delta variant in the Philippines despite an increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases in the country.
Community transmission happens when several people who have no known contact with an infected person contracts the disease.
"Sa ngayon nakikita pa rin natin ang pagkaka-link ng mga kasong ito sa isa't isa," DOH spokesperson Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in an online press conference
(As of now, we still see the link between these cases.)
"Hindi po natin puwede i-conclude na (we cannot conclude that) the surge is being driven by a specific variant because we are only doing purposive sampling," she said.
The DOH earlier said that the Philippines could only sequence around 750 samples of COVID-19 positive cases every week due to the limited capacity of the Philippine Genome Center and the National Institute of Health.
Genome sequencing is a step that determines the virus variant in a case.
"We have not determined the extent still sa mga lugar natin para masabi na ang main driver talaga ay Delta variant," Vergeire said.
On Thursday, the DOH reported 97 new cases of the Delta variant, pushing the total number of recorded carriers of the more virulent strain to 216.
Aside from new Delta variant carriers, the DOH also recorded 83 additional Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant cases, 127 new Beta (B.1.351) variant cases, and 22 fresh P.3 variant cases.
The national government announced the imposition of a new round of a hard lockdown in the National Capital Region next week to curb the spread of the more contagious COVID-19 strain.