MANILA — The Department of Health on Friday said the Marikina local government did well in handling an evacuee who turned out to be positive for COVID-19.
On Thursday, Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro said a 68-year-old evacuee at Barangka Elementary School was immediately isolated after showing symptoms of the coronavirus.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the DOH does not know yet if the patient already had COVID-19 before he evacuated but that there was proper screening and monitoring at the evacuation center.
“Kaya nga nung sya ay nagkaroon ng paghirap sa paghinga eto po ay agad agad nakita ng local safety officer natin dyan sa Marikina at dinala nila sa ating ospital na malapit where he was tested,” she said.
(That is why when the evacuee experience difficulty of breathing, he was immediately spotted by the local safety officer of Marikina and brought to a hospital where he was tested.)
“Actually ang ginawa ng Marikina is something of a good practice kasi immediately in-isolate nila kinuha yung tao dinala sa appropriate facility, pina-test,” she said.
(Actually what Marikina did was something of a good practice because he was immediately isolated, brought to an appropriate facility and tested.)
Vergeire said immediate contact tracing was also done after the test.
All 17 close contacts, including 3 relatives and 14 neighbors at the evacuation area, tested negative using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or swab test.
“Pero sila pa rin po ay naka quarantine at minomonitor at they will be monitored throughout this period for quarantine,” she said.
(But they are still quarantined and being monitored and they will be monitored throughout this period for quarantine.)
The DOH earlier said there may be a spike in COVID-19 cases as evacuees crowd evacuation centers. The health department has since deployed safety officers to enforce minimum health standards such as the wearing of masks and physical distancing.