Oct 29, 2020

Capitol appeals to IATF to swab test LSIs and ROFs at point of origin

In an online press briefing by the Provincial Information Office (PIO) recently, Provincial Health Office (PHO) chief Dr. Mary Ann Navarro said that they have already appealed to the national IATF EID to grant the request for the province to avoid having more positive coronavirus disease cases.

(File photo courtesy of PDRRMO through Palawan PIO)

The provincial government has appealed to the national Inter-Agency Task Force of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF EID) to swab test individuals at their point of origin before they are allowed to return to Palawan.
In an online press briefing by the Provincial Information Office (PIO) recently, Provincial Health Office (PHO) chief Dr. Mary Ann Navarro said that they have already appealed to the national IATF EID to grant the request for the province to avoid having more positive coronavirus disease cases.
She said that locally stranded individuals (LSIs), returning overseas Filipinos (ROFs), and authorized persons outside residence (APOR) should be tested first for COVID-19 in their point of origin before being sent back to the province.
“’Yan nga po ang pinu-push namin. Nag-letter na kami sa National IATF about that and naririnig na rin sa TV at radio pero wala pang papel na napirmahan tungkol d’yan. ‘Yong 2GO nga nakaraan ay ayaw ng magpapunta dito kung walang swab test dahil narinig nila pero noong may nagprotesta ay walang papel na maipakita kasi wala pa nga [wala pang papel],” Dr. Navarro said.
“Nag-appeal ang province noong June 25 or 26 na kung pwede lahat ng pupunta dito na LSI, ROF or APOR man, yan sana mag-swab na doon pa lang sa point of origin,” she added.
Dr. Navarro also added that aside from having a high risk of local transmission, the province’s facilities cannot accommodate a big volume of individuals to test because the priority are those who are probable and suspected cases.
She said they are challenged by the fact that they cannot prioritize asymptomatic and no history of close contact cases.
“Ang sabi naman nila bakit hindi na lang dito i-swab, hindi kaya ng facility natin dahil ang priority ay ‘yong may mga sakit, mga suspect and probable. ‘Yong mga asymptomatic at walang history ng close contact ay hindi natin mapa-prioritize kaya mas maganda na sa point of origin pa lang ay ma-swab na agad. Sana marinig nila kasi kawawa naman tayo, napaka konti ng mga health facilities natin kung ma-overwhelm tayo ng sobrang daming darating at magkaroon ng local transmission ay kawawa tayo kaya dapat ma-test muna sila from the point of origin,” she reiterated.
She said that there is still no response from the national IATF to grant the request of the province.
In other provinces, she said requests for the same had been granted.
“Wala pang sagot, pero bakit sa ibang probinsya agad sinagot? Ang iba nga nagpigil pa ng pagpapauwi mula June 23. Bakit sa atin hindi agad naaksyunan? Yon kasi — ang appeal natin dinala sa region at sila ang mage-endorse sa national,” she said.
She said that swab tests should also be done with three days validity from the day it was conducted.
Dr. Navarro also said that there are instances wherein barangay officials gave certifications without properly monitoring the quarantine period of certain individuals.
“Bakit naman tatlong araw? Parang napakalupit naman noon. Pero hindi. Kapag more than three days na ay puwedeng marami na siyang napuntahan ay marami na syang na-contact na may possible na COVID. Maraming kaso o active cases ngayon sa Manila, puwedeng isa doon sa nakasalamuha nila ay asymptomatic,” she said.
“Kasi minsan nagi-issue ng mga certification ang mga kapitan na na-quarantine kahit hindi naman talaga na-monitor, hindi natin sure kahit nabigyan na sila ng medical clearance at travel authority au tapos na. Tayo ang dehado doon kaya dapat mag-demand tayo na ma-test talaga sila,” she added.
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