Eastern Visayas has recorded two new cases of the highly transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), bringing its number of cases to 14, the regional health office reported Thursday.

The new cases, a man and a pregnant woman, are considered returning overseas Filipino workers.

According to the Department of Health (DOH) 8 (Eastern Visayas), the man, who is unvaccinated and a resident of Hilongos town in Leyte province, is currently in Manila and has yet to return to his hometown since he arrived in the country. Health authorities here did not say his date of arrival. He is reportedly asymptomatic and has been in isolation.

On the other hand, the pregnant woman from Hindang town, also in Leyte, arrived in the region on August 9 through the Tacloban Airport.

She completed her first mandatory quarantine period from July 27 until August 8 in Davao City where she tested positive for the virus.

“Upon release and compliance of protocols, she traveled directly to Manila and booked a flight for Tacloban City. Also unvaccinated, she is currently in isolation in the facility identified by the local government unit of Hindang, Leyte,” the DOH-8 stated.

Due to strict adherence to travel protocols, there was no close contact in this case except for her driver during the trip from Tacloban City to Hindang, who has undergone a swab test and tested negative for the virus.

The DOH-8 clarified that the new cases from Hilongos and Hindang are not linked to the previously reported Delta variant infections in Eastern Samar and Tacloban City.

The two new cases were part of the results received after their samples were sequenced by the Philippine Genome Center.
The DOH-8 said the purpose of whole-genome sequencing is to guide the overall strategies of the respective local government units against Covid-19 and not for individual case management.

“The samples sequenced are already Covid-19-positive regardless of the variant. Therefore, management and treatment of these cases should remain the same while these data are released for public awareness. All necessary health measures should be implemented to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the community,” DOH-8 information officer Jelyn Lopez-Malibago said.

As of August 26, the region has recorded 40,332 confirmed Covid-19 cases, 38,572 of which are recoveries, 1,308 are active cases, and 452 are deaths. (PNA)