MISE & Agrave; DAY
Canada announced on Sunday that it had detected the Omicron variant of the coronavirus for the first time on its soil, in two people who had recently traveled to Nigeria. & nbsp;
The two patients, the first detected on the American continent, have been isolated in Ottawa and health authorities are looking for their possible contacts, the government of the province of Ontario said in a statement.
“I was informed today by the Public Health Agency of Canada that testing and surveillance of COVID-19 cases has confirmed two cases of the variant of concern Omicron in Ontario,” said the Minister of Health Jean-Yves Duclos in a press release.
“Monitoring and testing continues,” he added. “We expect to find more cases of this variant in Canada.”
The Ontario government has confirmed that the two patients are in the capital Ottawa.
Canada closed its borders to travelers from seven African countries on Friday due to the appearance of the Omicron variant. Nigeria was not among those countries.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has classified Omicron as a “variant of concern”. Many countries have suspended or restricted travel to southern Africa, where the new strain was first discovered, and are instituting other obligations.
WHO says it may take several weeks to determine the changes caused by Omicron in terms of contagiousness and disease severity, and its implications for vaccines, tests and treatments.