Brunei reports record average of 920 Covid-19 cases per day amid new Omicron subvariant detected

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, June 28 (Xinhua): In the past one week, Covid-19 cases detected in Brunei have increased, with the new caseload standing at an average of about 920 cases per day, the country's health ministry has announced.

In a weekly briefing on Covid-19 update, the ministry said 55,525 Antigen Rapid Test (ART) results were uploaded to the government within one week, of which 11.6 percent were positive for ART tests.

The latest results of gene sequencing tests for Covid-19 cases have confirmed the presence of Omicron subvariant BA.5 in the country, in addition to the Omicron subvariant BA.4 detected earlier.

"Thus, the increase in cases seen in recent weeks is most likely due to Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5.

This situation is similar to that seen in some other countries, where it is also expected that this increase will not burden the health care system in this country," the health ministry said.

Brunei reported 1,185 new Covid-19 cases on Monday night.

Among the new cases, 1,173 were results from Antigen Rapid Test (ART) tests uploaded to the government and 12 were results of 267 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) laboratory tests performed in the past 24 hours.

However, the health ministry said that the country has no longer shared the daily number of new and active cases of COVID-19 since June 22.

The high rate of immunity among the population of this country due to vaccination or natural infection means that the number of daily cases no longer gives an accurate description of the impact of the infection on the healthcare system, the health ministry said.

A better alternative description is through the number of cases in Categories 4 and 5 requiring hospital treatment as well as vaccination rates for specific groups, it added.

As of June 25, 72.8 percent of Brunei's population have received three doses of Covid-19 vaccines. Meanwhile, 73.6 percent of second dose vaccinations were administered to children aged five to 11 years old.

The Covid-19 vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca and China's Sinopharm are administered in Brunei. - Xinhua

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