Manitoba Daily

Friday, January 28, 2022

The federal government will follow up with Hong Kong on the Omicron case

Key takeaways:

  • The federal govt will follow up with its counterparts in Hong Kong with one of their confirmed cases of the rare COVID-19 Omicron strain.
  • Canada suspended the admission of any foreign nationals who have been via southern Africa in the last 14 days on Friday. 

As per Canada’s chief public health officer, the federal government will follow up with its counterparts in Hong Kong over one of their verified incidences of the unique COVID-19 Omicron variant.

At a news conference on Friday, Dr. Theresa Tam said that Canadian officials would contact Hong Kong authorities following allegations that one of two confirmed instances of Omnicron was in a tourist who arrived from Canada.

“This individual likely caught it somewhere other [than Canada], but never say never,” Tam said during a press conference on Friday. “We just want to follow up to see if there’s anything we need to trace back to that particular tourist in Canada.”

Also read: Concerns about a coronavirus strain have led Canada to ban travelers from southern Africa

Global Affairs Canada stated in a statement to CTVNews.ca that it “is investigating media claims of a Canadian person being held in quarantine in Hong Kong. No additional information can be shared according to the provisions of the Privacy Act.”

CTVNews.ca has not independently established whether or not the patient traveled via Canada.

According to the Hong Kong government, a visitor from South Africa discovered the first case in Hong Kong and was transmitted to the second individual residing in the hotel room opposite theirs while quarantined.

Tam stated that there is no evidence of the Omicron variation being present in Canada at this time.

Federal government to follow up with Hong Kong on Omicron case with potential  link to Canada

“Many countries may begin identifying these types of variants and this specific variant within the following day, so we’ll have to keep an eye on it,” Tam added. “So far, other nations have either found it in travelers, or there is potentially fairly close contact, which means being in the same hotel as another instance.”

Over mounting concerns about the new COVID-19 variant, Canada suspended the admission of any foreign nationals who have been via southern Africa in the last 14 days on Friday. 

Anyone currently in the nation and has been through the region within the last two weeks has been urged to be tested and quarantined until they receive a negative result.

South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, and Eswatini are affected.

Canadians and other permanent residents returning to Canada from the region must have a negative test in the third country.

Omicron, previously known as “B.1.1.529,” was discovered in Botswana and appeared to have a high number of mutations in the coronavirus’s spike protein – approximately 30.

Source: Global News

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