TO ADDRESS the need for aggressive contact tracing to counter the spread of Covid-19, the Mandaue City Public Library Computer Laboratory was converted to a Contact Tracing Operations Center.
Aside from hiring more contact tracers to intensify its contact tracing, the Mandaue City government has set up an operation center in the corresponding data processing of the contact-traced individuals.
John Eddu Ibañez, the executive secretary of Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes, said the composite team from the city government and the officers from the Mandaue City Police Office (MCPO) will man the operations center.
The Contact Tracing Operations Center opened on Monday, Aug. 3, 2020.
PCapt. Jovito Labra and PCapt. Eric Gingoyon are the liaison officers of the contact tracing operations center.
In an interview, Labra said the operations center will operate 24/7, and will collect and consolidate the contact tracing data gathered on the field.
Labra added that they have deployed a police officer to each barangay in Mandaue City who will also assist in the contact tracing in the area and forward to the operations center the data collected in the field.
Gingoyon said the MCPO is privileged that they have sent representatives to attend the contact tracing seminar of Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong.
Thus, the city has adopted some methods that Magalong discussed during the seminar.
One of the methods is that once there are reported positive cases, if the patient is asymptomatic, they will immediately trace the contacts from two days prior to the scheduled swab.
For symptomatic patients, they will trace their contacts from up to 14 days before their scheduled swab test.
During their contact tracing procedure, all their contact tracers will also have the same questionnaire and the same template for all the barangays as what they have agreed on with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), said Gingoyon.
On the other hand, Ibañez said the hiring of more contact tracers is still ongoing.
Seven new contact tracers have been hired, and most of them majored in medicine while some majored in criminology.
The seven newly recruited tracers will still have to undergo the one-day contact tracing training by the city government and assisted by the MCPO.
Once they are equipped with the basic knowledge of contact tracing, they will be deployed to the barangays.
Ibañez added that they will provide food and housing for the contact tracers who wish to not go home to avoid infecting family members. (KFD)