AMID public scare on the mysterious China disease, the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ)-Davao said that it has been more than a decade since they last monitored a traveler from abroad who was infected by an infectious disease.
Dr. Wilson Lim of BOQ, in an interview on the sidelines of the Kapehan sa Dabaw at The Annex of SM City Davao yesterday, January 13, not a single traveler monitored by their office exhibited symptoms of the virus.
Lim said that even before the news on the mysterious disease broke out, BOQ has been monitoring the passengers at Davao International Airport’s international arrival lounge through their thermal screening to check body temperature, thus, prevent the spread of diseases.
Considering the huge number of Chinese nationals visiting the city with an average of 100-120 a day, Lim said that aside from the mysterious disease of unknown origin, they are also monitoring the deadly plague from the same country.
“Dumadaan sila sa scanner namin then kung mag-positive na meron silang lagnat sa thermo scanner, dino-double check namin yan sa thermometer namin. Kung wala naman, kung nag negative sa thermometer, then advise lang namin for surveillance lang sila,” Lim said.
Once they exhibited symptoms of flu or respiratory infection, the personnel of BOQ will isolate the passenger for further verification as part of their measures against infectious disease originating from other countries.
“Pero kung may lagnat at nag present ng sintomas ng flu, that’s the time na kailang na namin silang i-quarantine or i-isolate muna,” Lim said.
He cited the last time they monitored a patient was more than 10 years ago for suspected Middle East Respiratory Syndrome–Coronavirus (Mers-Cov).
Lim, meanwhile, assured that currently no reported cases of the pneumonia-like disease had been monitored by their office.
Aside from the airports, BOQ is also checking foreign vessels in Davao Gulf. Their personnel board the ships to check the passengers as well as the crew to make sure they are not sick before they are allowed to dock.
Health authorities advised the public to observe a healthy lifestyle, practice proper hand washing, do regular exercise, eat the right food, and avoid crowded places to prevent acquiring infectious diseases.