370 AFP personnel infected with COVID

Published July 17, 2020, 2:05 PM

by Martin Sadongdong

Three-hundred seventy personnel of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) have been infected with COVID-19 and the number continues to rise, the military said Friday.

“The AFP has recorded an upward trend in the number of active, recorded, and cleared cases,” said Major Gen. Edgard Arevalo, AFP spokesperson.

Two-hundred twenty-one are active cases, 22 have recovered, 126 have been cleared and allowed to return to their homes and report to work, while one succumbed to the illness as of Thursday, he said.

The lone fatality was a civilian human resource, the military spokesperson said but provided no further details.

To prevent the further spread of COVID-19 within its ranks, Arevalo said the AFP is “vigorously” implementing established health protocols issued by the general headquarters.

“These include contact tracing, regular building and facility disinfections, and stringent screening measures relative to the entry and exit of personnel and visitors in the course of official businesses,” he stated.

“We will ensure that members of the AFP are physically fit and healthy to continue performing its mission as the country’s dependable force to address national security issues and even the pandemic,” he added.

Meanwhile, Arevalo said he tested negative for COVID-19 after he was exposed to a staff of Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana who was positive for the virus in an event in Jolo, Sulu last Monday.

Lorenzana and AFP chief Gen. Felimon Santos Jr., who were also with the COVID-infected staff in Jolo, also tested negative for COVID-19 but would continue their quarantine.