Returning residents mark 12 new Covid-19 cases in DavOr

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MATI, DAVAO ORIENTAL— Twelve returning residents of Davao Oriental were found positive of Coronavirus-19 (Covid-19), eight of which are Overseas Filipino Workers while the remaining four have travel history in the province of Maguindanao.

In a Facebook Live, Provincial Task Force on COVID-19 Action Officer Dr. Reden Bersaldo said of the twelve, eight (8) are returning OFWs while the remaining four just came home from the province of Maguindanao. All of them arrived on May 26, though the Mercy Flight via Manila -Davao and Oplan Sundo respectively.

Of the eight OFW’s, three are from the municipality of San Isidro while five are from Banaybanay.

Bersaldo said when they were sent home, the patients who are now isolated and in stable condition, brought along with them the negative swab test yielding negative results except one who came from Maguindanao has tested positive on a Rapid Diagnostic Test prior to his arrival in the province.

Upon their arrival, provincial health authorities again conducted a swab test and sent it to the Southern Philippines Medical Center for testing and the twelve turned out positive of coronavirus.

“Even if they were already swabbed and quarantined for 14 days in Manila or anywhere else where they were on standby, our policy here in our province is to quarantine and re-swab them,” said Dr. Bersaldo, noting that the province has already procured 11,000 sets of RT-PCR swab test and 16,000 sets of PPEs and has conducted training on swab testing and contact tracing “in anticipation to this kind of situation.”

Davao Oriental has been considered Covid-free during the last two months but the recent result as announced by the Provincial Task Force on COVID-19 on Friday, May 29 showed twelve positive cases.

The twelve Covid-positive patients will be undergoing treatment inside the quarantine facility even is they are asymptomatic or without symptoms and are being categorized as mild cases. The Provincial Government and the two local government units are working together for the treatment of these patients.

Currently, the Provincial Task Force, through the Municipal Health Offices of the two local government units are monitoring the patients’ health status which include identifying those with pre-existing medical condition. These patients will be subjected to another RT-PCR swab test in order to verify the results.

Under the guidelines set by the Provincial Task Force on COVID-19, all individuals, including returning OFWs, are required to undergo re-swabbing upon their arrival in the province regardless if they already have secured negative RT-PCR test result from their area of origin.

The Provincial Task Force, through the Municipal Health Offices of the two local government units are monitoring the patients’ health status which includes identifying those with a pre-existing medical condition. These patients will be subjected to another RT-PCR swab test in order to verify the results.

While these individuals have only a few contacts given that they were immediately isolated upon their arrival, contact tracing is still being undertaken. All health workers who came in close contact with these individuals will also be subjected to swab testing. “We will not take chances,” said Dr. Bersaldo.

As of this posting, the DOH has yet to determine the mode of transmission/infection on the cases involving patients from Davao Oriental, the patient profile they released stated “History of exposure: Ongoing Investigation.”

Given this circumstance, Provincial Task Force on COVID-19 reminds the residents of Davao Oriental to always follow health protocol given important to hygiene and sanitation, proper handwashing, wearing of facemasks, and to stay home and avoid unnecessary travels, among other measures.-Newsline with PR

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