SULAIMANI – Fourteen cases of COVID-19 variant were confirmed in Erbil on Monday (February 22), bringing the total number of confirmed cases of the UK variant to 19, Erbil Health Directorate said.
Dlovan Mohammed head of Erbil health department confirmed to Shafaq News that 14 people tested positive for the COVID-19 variant.
Seven of the infected were abroad and returned to the Kurdistan Region, Dlovan Mohammed said.
First five cases of COVID-19 variant, first identified in United Kingdom, were confirmed in Erbil on Sunday (February 21) after being “suspected” on Saturday (February 20).
“Five individuals who were suspected to have been infected with COVID-19 variant, tested positive,” Aso Hawezi spokesman for Health Ministry confirmed to Zhyan News Network.
According to the ministry spokesman, labs in the Kurdistan Region that process COVID-19 tests have the medical equipment needed to identify new variants.
The Kurdistan Region’s airports and security checkpoints will host testing on-site for the COVID-19 variant, Hawezi said.
“Total preparations have been made to respond to any kind of proceeding and test anyone who visit the Kurdistan Region from other parts of Iraq,” he added.
Medical experts suggest COVID-19 variant which was first found in the United Kingdom, may be up to 70 per cent more transmissible than the old variant.