THE Provincial Government of Davao Occidental has finally released about 50 people after being held for days in Trucut in Sta. Maria, the border before entering the province.
Davao Occidental health education promotion officer Prince Paraiso said the people, mostly from Davao City, were already facilitated back to their respective municipalities on Saturday, April 4, and are considered persons under monitoring (PUM).
He said each village and municipality has set up their respective PUM facilities.
“They will be quarantined for 14 days so dili pa gyud sila makauli sa ilahang balay (they cannot go to their homes yet). They are profiled and the MSWDO (Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office) will take care of their food, and the RHU (Regional Health Unit) will also conduct check-ups,” he said.
The residents of Davao Occidental were reportedly stranded in Trucut after the Provincial Government implemented its Executive Order (EO) 26 or enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) on April 1, four days ahead of the ECQ declaration for the whole Davao Region.
He said the people were displaced workers from Davao City who were forced to stop their jobs due to the community quarantine in the city.
Since Davao City has already reported local transmission, he said the province intensified its measures against Covid-19.
Paraiso said the release was delayed because Davao Occidental Governor Claude Bautista has yet to come up with measures to ensure the people were not infected by the virus.
“Ang objective namo, we will protect our more than 300,000 constituents sa Davao Occidental. Sayang naman yung efforts namin if may makapasok (Our efforts will be futile if the virus makes its way here),” Paraiso said.
“Ginatan-aw pud namo nga basi naay manganhi nga taga laing lugar nga musulod kay kabalo na man ta nga ang Davao Occidental, zero pa. Siguro ang ilang huna-huna it is safer here in Davao Occidental than in other places (People from other areas might come here thinking it is safe to stay here because there are no cases yet),” he said.
He added being a young province, they do not have enough health facilities to efficiently respond to the health crisis.
Davao Occidental only has three main hospitals - the Malita District Hospital in the town of Malita, the Tomas Lachica District Hospital in Jose Abad Santos, and Sarangani Municipal Hospital. All the hospitals are not equipped with isolation areas yet.
As of April 6, Davao Occidental has remained free from confirmed cases of Covid-19 based on the information from the Department of Health in Davao Region (DOH-Davao).
On the same date, the province has reported a total of 1,300 PUMs. Of the number, 443 have been cleared while 857 are still under monitoring. It also has 11 Patients Under Investigation (PUIs) with two already cleared while nine are still under monitoring.
Paraiso said among the PUMs and PUIs, there are some who have travel history in New Davao Matina Gallera. They have already voluntarily submitted themselves for testing and monitoring.
“Some of them are cleared na and some of them are home quarantined,” he said.