The new Omicron cases involved 11 women and six men between the age of 24 and 60 years detected on Tuesday, according to the Gorgas Memorial Institute for Health Studies, the Ministry said.

The cases were detected in Panama City's metropolitan area and San Miguelito in Panama province, as well as in the neighbouring province of Panama Oeste, Xinhua news agency reported.

None of the patients required hospitalisation, the Ministry said, adding they have been in isolation since testing positive.

The Central American country's first case of the variant was detected on December 20 in a 50-year-old man.

According to health authorities, all but one of those infected had traveled to South Africa, Colombia, Spain, the US or Puerto Rico.