The municipality of Busuanga is the third town so far, following Sofronio Espanola and Coron, to have reported confirmed cases of COVID-19 from returning residents previously stranded in Manila because of the lockdowns.

Busuanga reported on Friday it has three new COVID-19 cases, all locally stranded individuals (LSI) who have returned from Manila.

Jonathan Dabuit, Busuanga municipal information officer (MIO), told Palawan News on Friday evening that the three new confirmed cases were all part of the locally stranded individuals (LSI) from Metro Manila who arrived in Coron town on June 7 aboard the June Aster vessel (batil).

“LSI lahat, sila ay galing ng Metro Manila sakay ng June Aster June 6 [umalis]. ‘Yong tatlong pasyente ay magkakaanak ito, isang pamilya actually,” Dabuit said.

The three Busuanga patients include a 47-year-old father, a 46-year-old wife, and their 25-year-old son, whom all disembarked on June 7. They were initially held at the municipal quarantine facility, where they first underwent rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) prior to being discharged after completing the mandatory 14-quarantine period.

“June 7 sila dumating, 14 days kasi sa quarantine facilities pagkatapos ay i-check pa din sila sa RDT at nagkataon na positive sila sa RDT kaya kinunan kaagad sila ng specimen para sa RT-PCR test noong June 23,” Dabuit added.

The number of COVID-19 positive patients in Palawan has already reached 26 after three new cases were reported in Busuanga town. Puerto Princesa City has the highest incidence as of Friday, with 13 active cases.

Contact tracing is being undertaken by the local authorities, and the three patients would undergo a repeat confirmatory test on July 7.

“Sa ngayon ay gumagawa na ng contact tracing sa lahat ng possible na nakasalamuha nila pero bagamat dito sa Busuanga pagdating nila ay wala na silang nakasalamuha dahil paggaling nila ng pier ay diretso na kaagad sa municipal quarantine facility natin,” Dabuit said.

There are now a total of five COVID-19 positive patients recorded out of the 21 passengers on the same voyage of June Aster.

The recent development brings the total COVID-19 positive tally in Palawan province to 26, with 24 active cases—six in Bgy. Sta. Monica, seven in other parts of Puerto Princesa, five in Sofronio Española, three in Coron, and three in Busuanga.

(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.