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Health Expert: Maintain mask use as BA.5 cases increase

In light of the country’s increasing Omicron subvariant cases, a specialist in infectious diseases is recommending that the general population continue to use face masks.

Dr. Edsel Salvana wrote on Facebook on Wednesday that masks should be worn indoors and out since the Omicron BA.5 subvariant is “extremely infectious.”

They are discovering this in other nations AFTER they abolished their mask mandates. It’s a good thing that the Philippines is much more careful,” he remarked.

Salvana pointed out that while the usage of face masks is still important to prevent further infections while we wait for improved vaccines, current vaccines continue to protect against serious diseases but are less effective at avoiding infection.

According to health experts, Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 are just as contagious as measles, which is regarded as the most contagious viral disease in humans.

Being outside offered an effective defense against contamination with earlier coronavirus strains like Alpha and Delta. However, the newest Omicron subvariants make attending an outdoor event somewhat risky.

There are a total of 293 BA.5, 87 BA.2.12.1, and 12 BA.4 instances throughout the nation. Between July 7 and July 11, there were 60 new instances of BA.5, 17 more cases of BA.2.12.1, and two new cases of BA.4.

Omicron BA.5 subvariant is “not the worst Covid-19 variant,” according to Salvana.

That honor currently belongs to Delta, he said, which killed more people in the area than any other variation and nearly brought our healthcare system to its knees. The aggressiveness of the variation and a lack of broad vaccination contributed to Delta’s deadliness.

As an Omicron sublineage, BA.5 is probably less virulent than Delta from the outset, he continued.

With the broad vaccination that still protects against serious disease, severe and critical cases positive for Omicron subvariants are not anticipated to reach anywhere near Delta levels to overwhelm the healthcare system, he continued.

Earlier, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. stated that if it is obviously safe, the government may consider making face masks optional.

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