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Dr. Tam Says The New Omicron Variant Hasn't Been Found In Canada Yet But It Could Happen

The top doc noted that it's "very difficult" to keep the virus out even with travel restrictions in place.

Trending Senior Staff Writer
Dr. Tam Says The New Omicron Variant Hasn't Been Found In Canada Yet But It Could Happen

With the recent discovery of the new Omicron variant, Canada's top doctor has revealed that it hasn't been detected in this country but it could happen even with new travel restrictions in place.

During a COVID-19 update on November 26, Dr. Theresa Tam said that provincial laboratories have searched for the variant but haven't found any detection to date, which means "there are no indications of the variant's presence in Canada."

The top doctor also said that Omicron, which she called "unusual" because of its high number of mutations, hasn't been identified through the post-arrival testing of international travellers that happens in Canada.

After the variant was discovered in Africa, the federal government introduced new travel restrictions on November 26 that limit travel from seven countries in the continent's southern region and mandate quarantine and testing for travellers.

Despite the new travel rules, Tam noted that it's "very difficult" to keep a virus like this out of a country completely and border measures aren't 100% effective but they add another layer of protection.

"I don't think people should be surprised if we did get a detection," she said.

Canada's top doctor mentioned that officials are looking into the variant and continuously working to identify it the country.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

    Lisa Belmonte
    Trending Senior Staff Writer
    Lisa Belmonte is a Senior Staff Writer for Narcity Canada’s Trending Desk focused on government of Canada jobs and is based in Ontario.
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