Iloilo City’s Omicron variant rises to 17 cases

ILOILO CITY — With the significant surge of Iloilo City’s COVID-19 cases this month, the number of Omicron variant has risen to 17.

This was after the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) was able to confirm the presence of 16 new cases of Omicron variant in laboratory results released last January 25.

People wearing face masks cross a busy intersection in Iloilo City, which now has 17 cases of COVID-19’s Omicron variant. (Tara Yap/Manila Bulletin)

According to the Iloilo City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit of City Health Office (CESU-CHO), 14 of the 16 Omicron cases have already recovered.

“The Omicron cases are being assessed. Two have not yet recovered so they were referred to infectious disease specialists,” said Dr. Marigold Calsas, CESU chief.

Based on CESU-CHO records, nine of the 16 Omicron cases went to world-famous Boracay Island during the holiday season.

It remains unclear though if the seven remaining Omicron cases had travel history outside of Iloilo City.

But the city’s first Omicron variant case earlier this year was a returning Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW), who came back from Africa.

CESO-CHO records show that 13 have been fully vaccinated while three were unvaccinated.

Calsas said that half of the Omicron cases were asymptomatic.

However, the other half exhibited symptoms such as fever, cough, runny nose, sneezing, and fatigue. None were hospitalized as they were all under home quarantine.