Omicron detected in Beijing came by package from Canada: Chinatext_fields
Beijing: China claimed that the only Omicron case detected in Beijing came from Canada through a parcel shipped here, IANS reported citing a Chinese state-affiliated Global Times report.
Beijing claimed that according to health officials there, the detected case has similar strains of the virus found in North America and Singapore. The Omicron variant was detected in the outer package, internal surface and the documents inside the parcel, Chinese authorities said.
A patient was found infected by Omicron on January 15, and incidentally, he had received an international mail on January 11, which was sent from Canada on January 7. The package was reportedly shipped through the United States and Hong Kong before it reached Beijing
Out of the test results of 22 samples from the mail package Omicron was detected in two from the outer cover of the box, two from the inner surface and eight from documents inside, Global Times reported.
Global Times quotes the deputy director of the Beijing centre for disease control, Pang Xinghuo, that there are chances that the variant reached Beijing through the package. According to him, it is evident from the epidemiological studies, testing results of suspicious samples and the genes sequencing result of the case.
Pang further said that the Covid-19 virus could live for a long time in low temperatures, and thus mail service could become an apt vector for them to spread, and he suggested that people should reduce overseas purchases.
Meanwhile, the Beijing health department asked people to be cautious while handling overseas mails, advised them to use masks and gloves while receiving them, disinfect them and dispose of the covers.
Beijing health authorities are adamant that the particular case has no relation to Omicron outbreaks in other Chinese cities. But this is not the first time China reporting outbreaks from mail packages.