NAGA CITY --- While COVID-19 continues to threaten other countries, Bicol region, particularly the province of Camarines Sur remains free and safe from Covid-19.
This was confirmed by Dr. Jose Manuel Rañola, Bicol Medical Center (BMC) point person for Emerging and Re-Emerging Infectious Diseases (EREID) during the FORUM@PIA held Feb. 26 at the Raul Roco Library, Naga City hall compound here.
“We have no confirmed case of COVID-19 here in Camarines Sur, particularly in the coverage area of the Bicol Medical Center. BMC is prepared for any eventuality and though we don’t have cases yet, we are not putting our guards and defenses down as we continue to remain vigilant so that the virus will not find its way here,” Rañola said.
Bicol Medical Center (BMC) focal person for EREID Dr. Joey Rañola (right) and DOH provincial officer Dr. Rey Millena (left) brief the media on coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) during the Forum@PIA held on Feb. 26, 2020. (JRM-PIAV/Camarines Sur)
Department of Health (DOH) Camarines Sur provincial officer, Dr. Rey Millena, one of the forum’s invited resource persons lauded the big help and assistance of the media to dismiss fake information and only disseminate factual data surrounding the emergence of COVID-19.
“This forum can serve as a venue where our media friends can also inform the community what the DOH is doing and what can we do to stop the virus from spreading,” Millena said.
Dr. Millena stressed the communication protocol issued by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) designating all governors, municipal and city mayors, DILG regional directors and all other concerned to serve as information managers, among other functions.
DILG Memorandum Circular No. 2020-023 also mandated the concerned personnel that for accuracy, they will only use the information and data provided by the DOH and WHO Philippines in all their advisories, updates and all information, which are posted on their respective pages or information walls.
Rañola said that the temporary travel ban issued by the government helped a lot in containing the virus. This, he said, ensured that those coming from infected countries can no longer infect others, thereby stopping the virus from its source.
Yet he reiterated that being free for now doesn’t guarantee that we are already safe from the virus.
“Vigilance is still a must plus maintaining cleanliness and hygiene and making our immune system stronger. To those with flu-like symptoms, with cough be responsible. You may isolate yourself, keep distance from others, get well before mingling in the public. If you have noticed others who have travel history and showing symptoms, you may also report that to your health authorities,” Rañola added.
As of March 2, DOH CHD, based on the ncovtracker.doh.gov.ph, Bicol region has no confirmed case of the COVID-19 and has zero PUIs. All 13 discharged PUIs already tested negative for the said virus.