The BA.5 Omicron variant of Covid-19 has entered Pakistan and many cases have been reported from Karachi and Hyderabad, the Sindh Health Department announced on Sunday. The BA.5 Omicron variant was first identified in South Africa in November. Meanwhile, the positivity rate of Covid-19 cases in Islamabad has also surged to 4.10%. District Health Officer (DHO) Sunday said out of 1,098 samples collected during the last 24 hours, 45 people returned positive. Notably, the positivity rate of the pandemic virus in Pakistan has also jumped to 1.77% recently which the officials are linking with the spread of the new sub-variant, says a news report.
The World Health Organization (WHO) had also classified the BA.5 variant as a “variant of concern” after a spike was witnessed in the global coronavirus cases. It is considered ‘more contagious’ than its predecessors, but milder.
New findings suggest that the people infected with previous Omicron variants are still vulnerable to the BA.5 variant even if they are fully vaccinated. The new contagious variant, along with BA.4 sub-variant, also accounts for around 21% of new Covid-19 cases in the US in June.
According to fresh statistics released by the NIH, 11,663 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours. It said 58 patients were in critical care, whereas the government’s COVID dashboard put the figure at 55. No deaths from the virus occurred in the last 24 hours, the institute reported. One death was last reported by the government dashboard on June 16.Pakistan has so far recorded 30,383 deaths from COVID-19. Fatalities have generally been on a decline since the last high of 56 recorded on September 30, 2021. The total number of cases in the country, according to the government dashboard, are 1,531,982. The caseload was perceived to have reduced in the country, however new reports have surfaced stating otherwise.