While Puerto Princesa City saw a rapid rise in the number of COVID-19 cases with 12 active cases so far, 19 other towns of Palawan have remained free from the virus, according to the Disease Surveillance Office of the Department of Health (DSODH)-Palawan.
The unaffected towns have adopted stricter measures to insulate themselves from a possible spread of the virus, with several of them discouraging travel to the city.
In Aborlan, information officer Karen Dondon said that they have started the implementation of the stricter rules and guidelines in the town following the cases in the southern municipalities.
Among these are the establishment of barangay checkpoints, requiring a foot bath and face shield in every municipal office.
“Based sa katatapos lang na meeting with the stakeholders, we imposed tighter coordination with barangay, simbahan at sa academe. Mahigpit na tayo dati, pero mas hihigpit ngayon dahil may positive na sa Puerto Princesa City at sa ibang munisipyo. Ibabalik po natin ang barangay checkpoints, dapat naka-protective gear ang mga drivers na sumusundo sa mga LSIs and kung may bumabalik dito ay required ang disinfection protocols sa barangay or sa school sa Western Philippines University (WPU) bago sila umuwi sa mga bahay nila,” Dondon said.
Kalayaan town Mayor Roberto Del Mundo also said that the town has remained free from the virus and minimum health standards are being implemented.
“Negative (walang kaso) sa Kalayaan. Every Friday po ay nag-iikot ang health team to check body temperature at kung maintain ba ang pagamit ng face mask kapag lumalabas ng bahay,” he said.
He said that health officials from the provincial government are set to conduct a medical mission and rapid testing in Kalayaan.
“Parating po doon ang team ng Provincial Health Office (PHO) to conduct the rapid test at medical mission onboard Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) ship,” Del Mundo added.
Manuel Abrea, mayor of Magsaysay, said they are limiting the entry of people to their town to those who are “allowed persons outside the residence” (APOR).
“Bawal pong pumasok ang walang rapid test. APOR lang ang puwede dito. Dapat po talaga ay walang makapasok na kaso ng COVID-19 dito,” he said.
Magsaysay is an island municipality of the province.
Palawan currently has 31 confirmed COVID-19 positive cases. Of the figure, 26 are active cases — 12 in Puerto Princesa City, six in Sofornio Espanola, three in Coron, two in Bataraza, and three in Busuanga.