CECC confirms first domestic BA.4 cluster
The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) has confirmed the first domestic cluster infection of the coronavirus BA.4 Omicron subvariant. The cluster is in northern Taiwan and involves members of a single family.According to the CECC, the latest BA.4 infection was found in the wife of a man who was listed on Monday as being Taiwan's first domestic case of that variant.Four members of the family all tested positive for the coronavirus before genome sequencing confirmed that both the parents are infected with the BA.4 subvariant.Genome sequencing is also being carried out on the couple's two children. Health officials say the results of those tests will be available soon.
This comes as the CECC reported another 23,425 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, of which 23,088 were domestic infections.Health officials say 33 previously reported cases have now been listed as severe, while 78 others have developed moderate symptoms. Thirty-four new deaths were also reported. The deceased ranged in age from their 40s to their 90s. All suffered from chronic illnesses or other severe diseases, and 15 had not been fully vaccinated.It brings the number of coronavirus-related deaths here in Taiwan since the pandemic began to 9,538.
In other health-related news, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says it has signed a contract to secure monkeypox vaccine doses.The CDC is not saying how many doses it will purchase but is stressing that efforts are being made to have the vaccines delivered by the end of this month.Health officials had previously said the purchased vaccine is a third-generation smallpox vaccine, which is clinically suitable for use against the monkeypox.
Three monkeypox infections have been confirmed here in Taiwan since 24 June. All of them were imported and the patients have been either discharged or scheduled to be discharged from medical facilities following quarantine.The CDC took delivery of 504 doses of an oral treatment for monkeypox on 27 July - which is only being prescribed for severe cases and people with immunodeficiencies.