By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson yesterday confirmed there are currently two patients in the province that have been listed as “persons under investigation” for the 2019 novel coronavirus (nCoV). The governor made the revelation following a closed-door meeting with officials from the Provincial Health Office and the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office.
According to Lacson, one patient is a foreigner from Taiwan while the second is a Filipino who arrived recently from Hong Kong. The foreign national was brought to the Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Regional Hospital in Bacolod City last Friday, followed by the Filipino patient the following day.
He noted, both patients exhibited “flu-like” symptoms and said hospital staff have already taken the patients’ swab samples.
Meanwhile, the patients were also quarantined while awaiting test results from the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.
The governor reiterated earlier statements and called for calm and encouraged the public to continue their normal routine.
He has also emphasized, “There is no confirmed case yet of the virus in the province.”
Lacson also said a second meeting will take place today in order to finalize their steps against the virus.
Earlier, Provincial Health officer, Dr. Ernell Tumimbang, said the province is ready and have stepped up surveillance monitoring at the province’s points of entry, along with the border between the Negros provinces.
Last Sunday, the Department of Health announced there are two confirmed nCoV cases in the country, with one fatality. In addition, the government agency said, as of yesterday, there are around 80 “persons under investigation” for nCoV./DGB, WDJ