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NCDC vigilant as new Omicron subvariants emerge in Nigeria


NCDC vigilant as new Omicron subvariants emerge in Nigeria

Story from Maimunat MOHAMMAD

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC) is closely monitoring the emergence of new subvariants of the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

These subvariants, known as EG.5 and BA.2.86, have been detected in various countries. While EG.5 is a “variant of interest” with a low global risk, BA.2.86 is under surveillance due to significant genetic differences from other circulating variants.

In collaboration with partners, the NCDC is actively conducting surveillance and enhanced testing measures to gather more information about these emerging subvariants.

The NCDC’s influenza sentinel surveillance sites continue to provide data on COVID-19 prevalence in patients with influenza-like illness and severe acute respiratory illness. According to the NCDC, there has been no observed increase in the trend of COVID-19 in this patient group.

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Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa, the Director-General, emphasized the importance of staying informed with verified information and practicing preventive measures.

He also noted that EG.5 has been identified in 51 countries and categorized as a Variant of Interest (VoI) by the World Health Organization (WHO) with a determined low global risk.

The BA.2.86 variant, a descendant of BA.2, is classified as a Variant under Monitoring (VuM) due to genetic distinctions from its ancestor and other circulating variants.

The NCDC underscores responsible actions to protect against COVID-19, including testing, vaccination, maintaining good hygiene, and wearing masks in high-risk settings.

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