Brooke’s Point recorded its first-ever COVID-19 positive case on Thursday, breaking a 4-day stretch of no new reported cases in the province.

Dr. Lovelyn Sotoza, municipal health office (MHO) chief of Brooke’s Point, told Palawan News that the recent COVID-19 positive patient is a 22-year-old male returnee who arrived on July 5 via AirAsia.

Dr. Sotoza said his isolation will begin on the day his positive confirmatory result came out.

“Ang official result ay lumabas ngayong umaga (July 9). LSI [siya], lalaki, 22-years-old, [dumating siya] noong July 5. Nasa isolation facility siya since July 5. Symptomatic siya, may ubo siya. Ginagamot natin siya, ibinibigay natin ang mga gamot para sa mild symptomatic COVID-19, according naman po sa clinical guidelines na binigay ng Department of Health (DOH),” Sotoza said.

She said the patient’s rapid diagnostic testing (RDT) was negative when it was managed in Puerto Princesa City upon arrival.

However, she said he was coughing that was why he was swabbed for confirmatory in the RT-PCR GeneXpert laboratory at the ONP.

“Siya po kasi negative sa rapid test sa Puerto [Princesa City] noong upon arrival noong July 5 that is why pinauwi sa Brooke’s [Point]. Pagdating dito, tumaas lang yong index of suspicion namin kasi may ubo si pasyente. Kasi ang protocol namin pagdating ni patient dito sa amin, regardless ng result sa Puerto [Princesa City,] ina-isolate namin kaagad at tini-treat namin — pagdating niya ganoon ang ginawa namin. Upon arrival niya, in-isolate, swab, at binibigyan namin kaagad ng gamot,” she said.

As of Thursday morning (10:00 a.m., July 9), the city and province have recorded 47 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 17 recoveries, one death, and 29 active cases.

Meanwhile, Dr. Dean Palanca, city incident commander, in a separate announcement aired live on Facebook, said that no new cases were reported in Palawan’s capital. He also said that a total of 43 cases ran from July 5 to 7 have all returned negative.

The 43 swab samples were gathered from the close contacts of the two persons deprived of liberty (PDL), including Philippine National Police (PNP) and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) personnel, and the relatives of the PDLS.

Palanca also reported that 2,084 individuals have arrived in Puerto Princesa City since the travel restrictions were eased.

“Total passengers sa plane saka sa ship from the start tayo nung pagpapabalik dito nasa 2,084 na tayo, 254 dyan ROF, 294 dyan APOR, 1,536 LSI,” Palanca added.

Of the recent arrivals, one individual was reactive to the rapid diagnostic test (RDT).

“Kahapon 80 plus ang dumating via eroplano isa ang naging IgG reactive. Naka-isolate na, schedule ang pagkuha swab sa kanya siguro mga 2-3 days makuhanan ng swab,” Palanca said.

Of the total active COVID-19 cases in Palawan, fifteen (15) are in Puerto Princesa, eight (8) are in Bataraza, two (2) are in Cuyo, two (2) are in Roxas, one (1) is in Taytay, and one (1) in Brooke’s Point.

(With reports from Ruth Rodriguez and Celeste Anna Formoso)

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is a desk editor and senior reporter of Palawan News. He covers politics, environment, tourism, justice, and sports. In his free time, he enjoys long walks with his dog, Bayani.