'Suspected' Covid-19 cases keep Basilica closed

CEBU. With her rosary, a woman is seen praying outside the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu, which was temporary closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. (Photo by Amper Campaña)

THE Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño (BMSN) will remain closed to the public even if Cebu City will transition to general community quarantine (GCQ) from June 1 to 15, 2020.

The Office of the Prior Provincial of the Province of Sto. Niño de Cebu-Philippines on Saturday, May 30, 2020, released an advisory that "suspected cases" of the new coronavirus disease (Covid-19) were detected on May 25.

"We have already conducted swab tests to all friars and personnel staying at the convent of the BMSN through the help of the Cebu City Health Department," said Fr. Andres Rivera Jr., OSA of the BMSN.

Rivera said all the friars and the personnel of the convent are now on quarantine at the Basilica convent.

Fr. Aladdin Luzon, OSA, said the first suspected case is an employee of the convent.

“The employee was coughing and had a fever for 2-3 days.” he said.

According to Luzon, the employee is now admitted to a hospital and is recovering from the condition.

Luzon said there are two primary contacts for the first suspected case. They are now on quarantine in separate rooms. Another seven are considered as secondary contacts who are also on quarantine.

"As of this moment, we are in constant coordination with the City Health officials as well as with the Barangay Sto. Niño officials. With their help and guidance, we ensure the public that everything is properly managed and there shall be no cause for further alarm and distress," the advisory stated.

As of this writing, Luzon said they are still waiting for the result of the swab test from the Department of Health to see whether the suspected case is positive for Covid-19 or not.

With the temporary closure of the Basilica, the friars said the faithful can still take part in live-streamed masses via the Basilica's official Facebook page. (WBS)


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