DOH looking into 8 returning Pinoys for possible source of new COVID variant in Bontoc

Kristine Sabillo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 27 2021 01:06 PM

Bontoc, Mountain Province in this photo taken on November 25, 2017. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — The Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday said it is looking at 8 overseas Filipino who returned to the Cordillera Administrative Region, to find the source of the new COVID-19 variant that spread in Bontoc, Mountain Province. 

“They have reviewed itong triaging system ng CAR, at nakakita sila ng 8 na OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) o returning OFs (overseas Filipinos) na bumalik sa bansa at pumasok din sa lugar na ito,” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during a Laging Handa briefing, referring to their contact tracing teams.

(They have reviewed the triaging system of CAR, and they learned of 8 OFWs or OFs that returned to the country and entered this area.)

Vergeire said they will be getting the COVID-19 test results of the returning Filipinos to help identify or to trace the source of the infection in the area.

Currently, there are 17 UK variant cases in the Philippines, of which, 12 are in Bontoc.

Vergeire said the same team was able to contact trace 615 contacts, including 2nd and 3rd generation contacts, of the said cases.

A Filipino couple who arrived from the United Kingdom were initially tagged as the source of the recent COVID-19 infections in Bontoc. But the DOH clarified later that the wife tested negative for COVID-19, and the husband, although COVID-19 positive, did not have the new variant.

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