Panabo City records first local transmission

PANABO City has declared its first case of local transmission after a healthcare worker was infected with Sars-CoV-2, the virus causing the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

In a statement, the City Government of Panabo said PC31 was confirmed to be coronavirus positive on August 8, 2020.

Based on the investigation conducted by the monitoring team of the Panabo City Inter-agency Task Force for Covid-19, PC31 was a healthcare worker who was taking care of a Covid-19 patient at Cainglet Medical Hospital Inc. (CMHI) in Panabo City.

Dr. Eileen Theresa C. Cainglet, medical director of CMHI, said in a statement posted online that PC31 was among their two staff who tested positive for Sars-CoV-2.

PC31 was exposed to a Covid-19 patient from Paquibato, Davao City. The patient was admitted to the hospital on July 25, 2020 due to fever and vomiting. The patient has a history of asthma and has had several check-ups at the hospital in the past.

"On the day of admission, the patient had no cough nor difficulty in breathing. On the night of July 26, the patient started complaining of difficulty in breathing," Cainglet said.

The difficulty in breathing is among the symptoms of Covid-19.

As standard protocol, the hospital informed the Panabo City Health Office (CHO) of a patient who is manifesting symptoms of Covid-19. The patient was referred to the Southern Philippines Medical Center to be tested and treated.

"We were informed on July 29 that the RT-PCR test done on the patient came out positive for Covid-19," Cainglet said.

She said contact tracing was immediately done and all hospital personnel who had close contact with the patient were placed on quarantine. Seventeen CMHI personnel handled the patient and were all wearing full personal protective equipment then.

"The hospital had the 11 personnel with the closest contact with the patient tested for RT-PCR at the Davao One World Diagnostic Center in Davao City on July 29," Cainglet said.

The 11, who were initially tested negative for Sars-CoV-2, continued to complete the 14-day mandatory quarantine.

On August 3, seven more staff of the hospital were tested -- the remaining six of the seventeen who handled the Covid-19 patient and one staff who volunteered to be tested.

"On August 8, two of the seven tested came out positive for Covid-19, the rest were negative," Cainglet said.

The two are PC31, who came from the 17 who had handled the patient, and the other is one who was not exposed to the patient.

"Both are now in the quarantine facility of Panabo City. Contract tracings are being done by the CHO to determine the possible source of our two employees who tested positive," Cainglet said.

On August 10, the hospital had more staff tested for the virus. Also, additional staff was placed under quarantine. The hospital is also not admitting patients since August 8 because most of its nurses are under quarantine. It has also conducted disinfection at the hospital since July 29.

In response to the recent Covid-19 developments in the city, Mayor Jose E. Relampagos has placed Purok 18 (Villa Feliza), Barangay New Visayas under a localized enhanced community quarantine (ECQ). It also placed a lockdown on Our Lady of Mary Mediatrix of All Grace Quasi-Parish under lockdown too. This is due to the child of PC31 being a person under investigation.

However, the child and spouse of PC31 have already tested negative after a swab test on August 11. They are still under a mandatory 14-day quarantine.

"Kini para bawalan ang mga resident nga mugawas sa ilang mga panimalay gawas kung naay medical emergency ug mapugnan ang posible na pagkatag sa Covid-19 sa maong lugar (The lockdown is to prevent the residents from going out of their homes, except for medical emergencies, to stop the possible spread of Covid-19 in the area)," the City Government said.


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