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Dozens of cases of Omicron subvariant confirmed in Canada | Coronavirus: Ontario

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Ottawa did not say if other provinces were affected, in addition to British Columbia.

The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) says the cases relate to mostly international travelers.

In British Columbia, half of the 66 cases identified are linked to trips abroad, notes the Ministry of Health.

The scientists of thePublic Health Agency of Canada monitor international data to detect signs indicating that [le BA.2] alters the severity and spread of disease or affects the effectiveness of diagnostic tests, vaccines, or treatments for COVID-19.

Further information is needed to determine if this sublineage will become a variant of concern in its own right, adds spokeswoman Anne Génier, who indicates that the new variant has many similarities with BA.1, the strain of Omicron which has been spreading in Canada at a meteoric rate since December.

However, the BA.2 strain has some differences from the BA.1 strain, including some mutations that may affect transmissibility, detection and possibly immune escape., indicates thePublic Health Agency of Canada, who notes that the data on the subject is very limited for the moment.

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The new subvariant was initially detected in November 2021 in the Philippines, among others. Since then, cases have been recorded in India, South Africa, the United States, France, the United Kingdom and Denmark, among others. In Denmark, for example, the new variant is replacing the BA.1.

Provincial reaction

British Columbia’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Bonnie Henry is not overly concerned at this time about the spread of the new subvariant. [le variant] Delta“,”text”:”It doesn’t seem to be taking over Omicron, as Omicron quickly took over [le variant] Delta”}}’>It doesn’t seem to get the better of Omicron, as Omicron quickly got the better of [le variant] Delta , she said on Tuesday.

We expected that, didn’t we? That there are varieties of variants. It’s too early to draw any conclusions.added B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix.

For his part, epidemiologist David Fisman, professor at the University of Toronto, says this: If the estimates suggesting that [le nouveau sous-variant] is more transmissible are right, yes, it is concerning, because one would expect an increase [des infections].

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Public Health Ontario has not specified at this time whether the BA.2 subvariant has been detected in the province and, if so, how many cases have been identified. The organization says, however, that its weekly variant review should include more information on Friday.

The National Institute of Public Health of Quebec has not yet responded to our request for comment.

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