A FEMALE who came from Italy became the first confirmed coronavirus disease (Covid-19) case in Baguio City.
On Monday, March 23, the Department of Health (DOH)–Cordillera said the Filipina arrived from Italy on March 2 and later tested positive of the virus based on final laboratory testing done by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) according to regional director Amelita Pangilinan.
The female patient is the second confirmed Covid–19 case in the region.
“Here in the Cordillera Region, we now have two confirmed cases with second case coming from Baguio City. This is a 61–year–old female who is now in stable condition,” Pangilinan said.
The DOH confirmation came a day after Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong’s statement made its rounds on social media announcing at least one presumptive Covid–19 case is confirmed in the Summer Capital.
DOH explained presumptive cases are defined based on the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta having three levels of classified potential Covid-19 case.
The first level is identified as persons under investigation (PUI) defined as any person having a history of travel or exposure to a person who has history of travel to Covid-19 infected countries with respiratory symptoms or not only to history of travel but exposure to confirmed case.
Another level is a presumptive positive case or anyone who was tested positive for the virus but testing was conducted at the local state wherein those falling under this category must have samples undergo for Covid testing at a national reference laboratory which is the RITM.
“Laboratory confirmed cases are those who was tested positive for the virus at the national reference lab which is our RITM. When we say presumptive positive, these are actually local tests that came out positive coming from the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC) but these results are pending certification at the national reference lab which is the RITM,” Pangilinan explained.
BGHMC is one of the sub-national hospitals identified by the health department as a testing center for Covid-19 cases.
The hospital will implement the three systems of identifying a positive case or level which is screening, confirmatory test 1 and confirmatory test 2.
“All PUIs based on the CDC are those high level of suspicion which will be subjected to the subnational lab testing or screening and first confirmatory testing and then they go to the national reference lab for the final confirmatory testing,” Pangilinan added.