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Pakistan reports its first confirmed case of Indian COVID variant

Pakistan has reported its first confirmed case of a coronavirus variant first identified in India on Friday.

According to the federal health, ministry, The Indian variant case was detected by the National Institute of Health.

The  NIH conducted whole-genome sequencing of SARS CoV-2 samples collected during the first three weeks of May 2021, health ministry spokesperson Sajid Shah said in a statement.

“The sequencing results confirmed [the] detection of seven cases of B.1.351 (South African variant) and one case of B.1.617.2 (Indian variant),” the statement said.

This was the first in-country detection of the Indian strain, it added.

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As being reported in  accordance with protocols, the contact tracing of all the cases has been in progress by the Field Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Division and the Islamabad district health officer.

“Continued detection of global strains highlights the ongoing need for observation of guidelines, usage of masks and [the] need for vaccination,” he added.

 

Pakistan has already banned travel to and from India in April to avoid the spread of the variant.

Saman Siddiqui

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