Canada reports first 2 cases of omicron COVID-19 variant in Ottawa

OTTAWA, Ontario — Health officials in Canada on Sunday confirmed that two cases of the mutated new coronavirus variant discovered in southern Africa have been confirmed in Canada.

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Two people from Ottawa, who recently traveled to Nigeria, have tested positive for omicron, the COVID-19 variant, CTV News reported.

“Today, the province of Ontario has confirmed two cases of the omicron variant of COVID-19 in Ottawa, both of which were reported in individuals with recent travel from Nigeria,” Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott and Chief Medical Officer of Health Kieran Moore said in a statement. Ottawa Public Health is conducting case and contact management and the patients are in isolation.”

The omicron cases come two days after Canada implemented new travel restrictions on foreign nationals who had visited several countries in southern Africa over the past two weeks, CBC reported.

>> Reports: Italy, Germany report cases of omicron COVID-19 variant

According to the World Health Organization, the variant was reported by South Africa on Wednesday, with the first confirmed case coming from a specimen collected on Nov. 9, CTV News reported.

Canada is the latest country to report cases of the variant. On Saturday, cases were confirmed in Italy and Germany, according to health officials from both countries.

>> Coronavirus: UK health secretary says 2 cases of omicron identified, linked

Earlier Saturday, two cases of the omicron virus were confirmed in the United Kingdom, the country’s health secretary said.

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Sajid Javid said one case of the omicron variant was discovered in Chelmsford and the other was found in Nottingham, ITV reported. Javid said both cases were linked, and there was a connection to the travelers from southern Africa.

Apart from South Africa, the variant has been found in Botswana, Belgium, Canada, Australia, the Netherlands, Denmark, United Kingdom, Germany, Israel, Italy, the Czech Republic and Hong Kong, according to CNN.

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