By Freddie Velez
CITY OF MALOLOS, Bulacan – Governor Daniel R. Fernando announced Monday that the province recorded no COVID-19 deaths for three weeks in a row since the lockdown.
After the first case that was reported on March 15, Bulacan now has 126 recoveries of the 261 confirmed COVID-19 cases.
Fernando said as soon as the Molecular Laboratory becomes operational, including two PCR machines and the Gene Xpert machine, 300 samples can be tested per day.
“Mas mapapabilis tayo ‘pag ganito. Tapusin natin ‘yung laban, targetin natin na ma-zero ang case dito sa Bulacan (We can speed up testing as we aim for a COVID-free Bulacan),” Fernando said.
The governor also instructed Dr. Jocelyn Gomez, head of the Provincial Health Office-Public Health to meet with the municipal health officers to inform them that the province will no longer allow home quarantine for asymptomatic patients.
“We need to finish this, hanggang maaari huwag nang magpa-home quarantine sa mga asymptomatic kung meron lang din tayong bakante, may pagkain naman dito, nakaalalay tayo sa mga kailangan nila, kasi may mga matitigas ang ulo, naka-home quarantine pero makikita mo nasa labas, kailangan mahigpit tayo, ‘pag ayaw ng pasyente, hindi pwede papasundo natin (As much as possible there will be no more home quarantines for asymptomatic individuals if we have facilities to care for them. There’s food here and we will support their needs. There are those who are stubborn. They are supposed to be under home quarantine but you see them outside their homes. We need to be strict. If the patient refuses, we will fetch them),” Fernando said.
By doing so, Fernando said that district hospitals will be decongested from coronavirus patients and can attend to non-COVID-19 cases.
The governor also reported during the meeting that the Regional Task Force on COVID-19 Central Luzon donated 2,000 sets of personal protective equipment (PPEs) that include sterile protective suit, medical overboot (shoe cover), KN95, medical gloves, surgical masks, protective gowns, head cover, face shields, and aprons as well as 3,000 Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) kits to Bulacan.
Dr. Gomez said that of the 261 COVID cases, 33 are health workers, 13 of whom are working in the province while the 20 others are working in hospitals outside Bulacan. They all recovered. The lone COVID-19 death was a consultant in one of the government hospitals in the province.
Moreover, the chiefs of the hospital are appealing to the public to stop discriminating health care workers because they are sacrificing their safety to protect the public from the deadly disease.