Two cases of Covid-19 strain from the United Kingdom detected in Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca
Puerto Escondido. Two cases of the Covid-19 strain identified in the United Kingdom, which is considered much more contagious, were detected in San Pedro Mixtepec, one of the two municipalities in which the tourist city of Puerto Escondido is located, Therefore, the epidemiological surveillance process in the Costa region began, authorities of the Oaxaca Health Services (SSO) confirmed to EL UNIVERSAL.
According to Yuko Nakamura, Head of the SSO Epidemiology Unit, reported that the cases of this new strain identified as B117 were confirmed last Monday, after two foreign tourists were tested for Covid in a private laboratory, such as a requirement to return to your home country.
The specialist explains that the detection of these cases was achieved because at the national level both epidemiological surveillance and genomic virological surveillance processes are carried out permanently, in which a percentage of the samples taken in the states are sequenced and sent to the Institute for Epidemiological Diagnosis and Reference (InDRE).
After sequencing the samples, if a finding is detected, it is reported to the states.
Yuko Nakamura points out that after the sequencing of the last month, on Monday they were informed of these two cases of Covid-19 that correspond to the British strain and that correspond to samples taken at the beginning of April, that is, in Semana Santa
“On Monday they informed us of these two cases. We monitored where the samples were taken and they corresponded to those of two foreigners who were in our state, in Puerto Escondido, at the beginning of April, during the Easter holidays ”, she explains.
After detecting the cases and having knowledge of the presence of this strain in visitors, the health authorities of Oaxaca activated epidemiological surveillance in the Coast region, to determine if there was community transmission of this variant of the virus, which can be identified if there is an increase in cases.
“When we detect the positives we notify the Health Jurisdiction number 4 costa, which in turn activated the protocols with international health,” he adds.
The SSO official details that according to the protocols, the private laboratory where the samples came from was visited and the complete data of these people was collected. Thus, it was determined that they were foreign visitors who are kept in isolation and were forbidden to travel for at least 10 days; In addition, the number of people with whom they had contact was determined.
As of the arrival of this new strain to the state, Nakamura indicates that all new confirmed cases in the region will be analyzed by genomic sequencing, to rule out that it is the British strain.
“This strain is known for greater transmission, but if we maintain sanitary measures, such as hand washing and healthy distance, there is no greater risk because it does not have a higher percentage of mortality,” says the specialist.
However, the Chief of the SSO Epidemiology Unit points out that by federal regulations genomic surveillance is permanent and a percentage of samples will continue to be analyzed, which will vary depending on the color of the risk traffic light; while when it comes to samples of foreigners, tourists or migrants, the totality is analyzed.
Although the expert points out that a month has passed since foreign visitors with this strain were in Oaxaca, so it could be ruled out that community transmission has occurred, surveillance will be maintained to verify that it has not remained in the state territory as It has happened with others, such as the one identified with the number 427, which was detected mainly in California, United States, but which also already has a presence in Oaxaca.
So far, the Oaxaca Health Services have notified that as of yesterday in the entity there are more than 46,114 confirmed cases of Covid-19, while deaths total 3,507, most of the 519 strain, which is the most widespread in the country.