The designated quarantine facilities in the city will start its operations Tuesday and are expected to house persons under investigation (PUI), including frontline health workers, to limit exposure to suspected carriers of the deadly coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Mayor Lucilo Bayron, in a prerecorded announcement aired late Monday, said this is part of intensive measures the city plans to undertake after one COVID-positive patient was confirmed on March 20.

Lawyer Arnel Pedrosa, the city administrator, confirmed also Tuesday that separate facilities for PUIs and health workers have already been prepared and will start operations as soon as the guidelines from the City Health Office (CHO) are available.

“Ready na itong quarantine areas natin, magka-hiwalay ang mga PUIs at ang mga health workers. Hinihintay na lang ‘yong additional guidelines from CHO pero magstart na ito ngayong araw,” he said. The identified locations were not disclosed to maintain the confidentiality.

More than P2 million pesos had been drawn from the recently dispensed P472 million calamity budget to fund the COVID-project.

Pedrosa also said that basic needs such as food and transport services will be provided for the PUIs and health workers.

“‘Yong P2 million pesos, budget lang ‘yon for PUIs. Hiwalay pa ‘yong sa health workers,” he added.

The PUIs who are waiting for their test results will remain in the said facility. Should they test positive, they will be moved to a government hospital in the city for immediate medical care set by the Department of Health (DOH), according to Pedrosa.

Puerto Princesa City has 58 PUIs including 43 local residents, 9 from other municipalities, 3 from other provinces, and 3 foreign nationals, as of 6 p.m., March 23.

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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.