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The Incident Management Team (IMT) has observed a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in Puerto Princesa City.

As of August 26, there were 133 active cases in Puerto Princesa, of which 91 are RT PCR and 42 are antigen cases, according to Arjo Escalona, the city government’s operations chief for COVID-19 response.

This is a more than 50% increase over the previous data posted on the IMT’s Facebook page on August 10, which recorded 65 active cases.

“Mataas na naman ang kaso, nasa surge alert na naman tayo,” he revealed.

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Escalona said that many health workers are currently positive for COVID-19.

“Bumabalik na naman tayo sa ganoon [sa pagtaas], mataas na naman ang mga kaso. Ang mga frontliners, mga workers natin ay tinamaan na naman ng COVID-19 kung saan indicator ito na mataas nanaman ang kaso dito sa atin,” he said.

According to the IMT, the B.5 subvariant of the Omicron virus is causing the increase in the city.

However, the IMT brushes off the idea of another lockdown.

“Karamihan po sa ating na-gy-gynome sequencing ay B.5, subvariant po ng Omicron, karamihan po dito sa ating siyudad ito ang nate-test natin,” Escalona said.

“Hindi na po tayo maglo-lockdown, ibig sabihin bukas na ang ekonomiya, lahat tayo ay frontliners na, expose na dahil lumalabas na tayo lahat,” he said.

He also encouraged individuals manifesting COVID-19 symptoms to get tested or call the IMT hotline immediately.

Escalona also said that patients who tested positive for COVID-19 using a self-testing kit available in various drug stores will still be subjected to confirmatory tests.

“‘Yong mga self testing kits ay available na over the counter, pinapayagan na po ang ibang brands pero may restrictions pa rin dyan ang FDA kung ano ang pwede gamitin at ano ang reliable. Kami sa IMT kung positibo kayo sa self test na inyong ginawa ay kino-confirm pa po namin ‘yan,” he said said

Isolation facilities that are available are at the Ospital ng Palawan (ONP), with 26 beds; Adventist Hospital of Palawan (AHP), with seven beds; and 53 beds at Skylight Hotel as the city’s Temporary Treatment and Monitoring Facility (TTMF).

In total, the IMT reported that the city recorded a total of 5,189 cases, 5,759 recovered, and 91 deaths.


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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.