Delta variant not as contagious among PGH frontliners due to vaccines, health protocols – FDA

Published August 3, 2021, 10:22 AM

by Jhon Aldrin Casinas

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Director-General Eric Domingo

The Delta variant of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) was not as contagious among healthcare workers of the Philippine General Hospital as most of them are vaccinated and observe health protocols, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said.

FDA Director-General Eric Domingo said 21 cases of the highly contagious variant were either admitted or tested at the PGH—a referral center for COVID-19 patients.

He pointed out that only two out of 400 people who have been contact traced after they were found to have been exposed have tested positive for the virus.

“Ibig sabihin (This means that) it wasn’t as contagious when it came to the PGH kasi unang-una, karamihan sa mga tao doon ay (because most people there are) vaccinated. At pangalawa, sumusunod sila sa mga health protocol (And second, they follow health protocols),” Domingo said.

A slide of Domingo’s presentation.

Five of those infected were healthcare workers and were fully vaccinated. None of them experienced severe illness, and all of them have already recovered.

“Bagamat sinasabi nga na sobrang nakakahawa itong Delta variant more than any other variants, however, in PGH na kung saan araw-araw silang exposed dito, mayroon lamang lilima na nagkaroon ng Delta variant at gumaling pa lahat (Although it is said that this Delta variant is more contagious than any other variants, however, in PGH where they are exposed to it daily, there are only five who have had the Delta variant and all have recovered),” he said.

The chief of the country’s food and drug regulatory body noted that most of those infected with the variant were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated.

Domingo said two of the cases have died, adding that the fatalities were not fully vaccinated.

Unvaccinated individuals have high risk of getting sick and may even result to death compared to those fully vaccinated, he explained.

“And as additional protection, we really have to observe health protocols,” Domingo said.

“Kapag tayo ay na-complete ang vaccine (Once we are completely vaccinated) and we observe health protocols, then it’s very, very unlikely that we will get severe illness or that we will die from COVID-19,” he added.