KUCHING, Dec 24 — A total of four cases of the B.188.8.131.529 or Covid-19 Omicron variant have been detected in Sarawak, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) Institute of Health and Community Medicine (ICHM) director Prof David Perera said.
He said two of the cases were reported in Bintulu, involving a 52-year-old man who had returned from Nigeria and underwent a swab test on Dec 19, and a 19-year-old male returning from the United Kingdom who did a swab test on Dec 14.
“Another two cases were detected in Kuching. One involving a 25-year-old female who returned from the United Kingdom and had a swab test on Dec 22 while the fourth case was a female with no recent history of travel, which suggests possibility of local transmission,” he said in a statement today.
Dr Parera who is a member Sarawak Covid-19 Advisory Group (SCOVAG) said, in light of a possible local transmission of the highly transmissible Omicron variant in the community, the general public is urged to be extremely cautious during the festive season and year-end holidays.
He also advised the public to immediately get their booster shot if they had not done so as studies had shown that the shot is necessary to boost the waning neutralising antibody levels to protect from Omicron infection.
“Public health SOPs (standard operating procedures) need to be strictly adhered to and gatherings avoided if possible to prevent further community spread,” he added.
On Dec 18, Health Director-General Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah in a statement said, two Covid-19 cases of Omicron variant were recorded in Sarawak on Dec 17, involving two travellers, one originating from the United Kingdom and the other from the United States. — Bernama