New COVID-19 variants confirmed in Jamaica

August 02, 2022

The Ministry of Health says that the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 sub-variants of the COVID-19 virus are currently present in Jamaica.

They were identified during the latest round of gene sequencing performed at the University of the West Indies, Mona.

Eighty-seven samples were sequenced with sample dates from May 13 to July 11, 2022.

All 87 samples were identified as the Omicron variant, with eight confirmed as BA.5 and five as BA.4 sub-variants.

“The Omicron sub-variants BA.4 and BA.5, according to World Health Organisation, are the dominant variants globally and are highly transmissible. As a result, there may be an increase in number of COVID-19 cases,” National Epidemiologist Dr. Karen Webster Kerr cautioned.

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