An increase in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases from 461 on August 5 to 521 on August 10 was recorded by the provincial government in municipalities in Palawan.

Of the 521 active cases, 345 are RT-PCR and 178 are antigen confirmed as of Tuesday, a post by the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) stated.

Culion has the most active cases out of the 23 municipalities, with 93, followed by Narra with 72, Agutaya with 61, and San Vicente with 54 — all of which were confirmed by RT PCR and antigen tests.

PDRRMO chief Jerry Alili said on the Provincial Information Office’s (PIO) Pag-asa at Pagbabago local radio program on Wednesday, August 11, that they began seeing the rise again in the past three days based on reports from the municipalities.

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“Sa ngayon po ay sa loob ng tatlong araw ay nakikita natin yong muling pagtaas ng kaso. Mayroon tayong 521 [active cases] sa ngayon sa pagbibigay ng report ng ating mga munisipyo sa Provincial Health Office (PHO) ng status ng cases sa kanilang lugar,” he said.

According to him, the rise in cases might be attributed to local transmission and the difficulty in reporting recoveries by municipal health offices (MHOs).

He said they are aware of the hardship in reporting because the MHOs are also overseeing other health concerns in their respective towns. 

“Minsan po may mga situation tayo sa mga munisipyo na hindi agad agad naire-report dito sa ating PHO at saka sa regional office sa DOH (Department of Health) [ang mga recoveries] para maibawas na doon sa mga active cases. Hangga’t hindi kasi nare-report na recovered, hindi po natin naibabawas,” Alili added.

Alili said to prevent further increases, they are helping the PHO in the implementation of vaccinations in the municipalities to protect residents from COVID-19.

No Delta variant in Palawan

Alili said there remain no Delta variant cases in the province as they continue to strictly enforce safety measures in Palawan borders with law enforcement units.

“Patuloy ang ating pagbabantay lalo na sa ating mga border, at mas lalong [naghihigpit] ngayon doon sa mga policy na inilabas ng National IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force),” he said.

Based on his observation, he said the cooperation among law enforcement agencies in Balabac town, where residents enter Malaysia via the backdoor, is enough to prevent the Delta variant from entering the province.

Even the barangay leaders and the municipal government are cooperating well with the PNP, the Philippine Coast Guard, the Western Command (WESCOM), and the PNP Maritime, Alili said.

“Maganda po yong ginagawang pagbabantay dahil yong barangay mismo ang siyang nagpapaalala at nagmo-monitor doon sa mga dumarating sa kanilang lugar. Basta may dumarating, mas mahigpit munisipyo ng Balabac. Basta may dumarating kaagad nilang nire-report at kino-quarantine na rin at ina-isolate,” he added.

No travelers from areas with Delta variants like Iloilo, NCR, Cagayan de Oro, and Davao, are allowed to the province. (with reports from Celeste Anna Formoso)

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