Jul 12, 2020

City withheld critical information about COVID-positive patient it booked with Hue Hotels

The letter, dated March 23 and addressed to Mayor Lucilo Bayron, also expressed concern that the action of city officials may have endangered the safety of the hotel staff who had interacted with the patient identified as Patient No. 4.

A copy of the medical certificate presented by the City Health Office (CHO) to Hue Hotels and Resorts Puerto Princesa.

The management of Hue Hotels and Resorts Puerto Princesa has filed a formal complaint with the City government over the latter’s alleged failure to fully disclose the health status of the Australian national that was checked in at their establishment by the City Health Office (CHO) and who later tested positive for COVID-19.

The letter, dated March 23 and addressed to Mayor Lucilo Bayron, also expressed concern that the action of city officials may have endangered the safety of the hotel staff who had interacted with the patient identified as Patient No. 4.

The patient, an Australian national who was among the early person under investigation (PUI) cases of Palawan, was found to be positive for COVID-19 but only after he was discharged from the Ospital ng Palawan (ONP) and issued a health clearance by the CHO that allowed him to fly out of the province on March 17.

The patient was reportedly checked in at Hue Hotels by city health personnel on March 14, with officials stating he was to be managed as “person under monitoring” (PUM).

“The City Health Office in endorsing Patient No. 4 to be accommodated in the hotel did not fully disclose critical health information of Patient No. 4, specifically that Patient No. 4 (a) was previously confined at Ospital ng Palawan; (b) was tested for COVID-19 and was awaiting results; and (c) was tagged as Patient Under Investigation (PUI),” the letter, signed by Hue Hotel GM Christian Guballa, stated.

Guballa expressed concern that the action of the city health representatives, who facilitated the hotel booking for the patient, may have “placed our staff and guests in harm’s way.”

“If the hotel had known that Patient No. 4 was a PUI from the onset, management would have handled the request for accommodation differently,” he added.

“If under the circumstances that it was revealed to us and duly stressed that we were to approach Patient No. 4 with extreme caution as PUI, we would have rethought our handling of the situation,” Guballa stated in the letter.

Guballa said they are presently monitoring the health condition of their hotel staff who have made direct contact with the patient. (with reports from Romar Miranda)

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