The Sindh Health Department has confirmed the reports of two new COVID-19 JN.1 variant cases in Karachi, Sindh province. The affected Individuals with symptoms related to the new coronavirus variant were identified upon their arrival at Karachi airport.
However, the specific variant has not yet been identified. Officials worried that these cases might have a link to the fast-spreading JN.1 variant that has caused worldwide panic.
The two passengers arrived from Bangkok and Jeddah on consecutive days. Rapid antigen tests verified their COVID-19 positivity with flu-like symptoms. However, airport authorities have sent their samples to a nearby university lab for in-depth analysis to determine the specific variant.
Meanwhile, health officials emphasize the importance of quarantining affected individuals to prevent further spread. Despite the diagnosis, authorities allowed both passengers to fly to their hometowns of Dera Ghazi Khan and Sanghar under quarantine conditions.
The Sindh Health Department expressed concerns about the low percentage of people screened at airports as it is just 2% utilizing quick antigen tests of incoming passengers. Also, It emphasized the lack of quarantine facility orders from the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC).
However, the reports of two new coronavirus variant cases of COVID-19 JN.1 from Karachi have raised the concern of health officials and citizens in Sindh. Because JN.1 is one of the most rapidly spreading coronavirus subtypes.
According to the World Health Organization, JN.1 is a “variant of interest.” It means it has changes that could spread the disease faster or make treatments or vaccines less effective.
JN.1 variant contributes to a large of infections in the United States. Hospitals have experienced an increase in patient admissions due to this variant. It is most common in the Northeast of the United States with 74.9% of COVID-19 cases. Most of these cases have the JN.1 type.
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