By Glazyl Masculino
BACOLOD CITY – The provincial government of Negros Occidental is currently monitoring two persons who were admitted in a hospital here for suspected infection of the novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson confirmed on Monday that a foreign national and a Filipino were placed under investigation (PUI), after they showed flu-like symptoms.
The two patients – a Canadian national, aged 43 years old, and a 12-year-old Filipino boy are now at an isolation facility in a hospital here.
Lacson said the foreign national traveled from Taiwan while the child traveled from Hong Kong before they were admitted to the hospital last January 31 and February 1, respectively.
Both of them first went to a private hospital where they were refused admission and advised to be confined at a government-run medical facility.
Lacson said that specimen of the two patients were already sent to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) which is expected to release the confirmatory results later this week. Another test will again be conducted on the patients.
Despite the reported cases, Lacson said that it was not a cause for worry because there has been no confirmed case of nCoV in the province. He clarified that the suspected case was because of the patients’ travel history and not because of local transmission.
“We don’t want to create a scare. We want to be transparent because we cannot just keep this from the public. What is important is we know them and they have been addressed,” he said.
Following the recent announcement, the governor said that he will reactivate the Provincial Infectious Disease Action and Control Committee to focus on addressing the recent health concern.
Lacson is urging private hospitals to be prepared. “I hope if there’s a need for patients to be admitted, they will also be willing to treat them,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr. Grace Tan, head of environment sanitation division of City Health Office (CHO), and spokesperson of the City’s inter-agency task force against nCoV, advised the public not to panic, and not to withhold any information of persons who may have traveled to places, where there are reported nCoV cases, and are showing symptoms of the deadly disease.
She advised them to inform the CHO and go to the nearest hospital. They are also tracing those persons who had close contact with the two patients.