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Local authorities in Roxas town are mulling a localized lockdown in Barangay Tumarbong, as it investigates a suspected local transmission case of the COVID-19 virus.

Dr. Leo Salvino, municipal health officer (MHO) of Roxas, told Palawan News on Thursday, that a COVID-19 positive patient, a 40-year-old male locally stranded returnee, has breached health protocols after he was released from the mandatory quarantine.

“Pumunta [siya] sa lamay, nakipag-inuman, nagsimba [ng] walang face mask at nakipaglaro ng basketball. Sana din sa mga religious groups, kapag may mga gathering dapat naka-face mask and face shield pa din at maintain ang social distancing,” Salvino said.

The male patient, who is already in Metro Manila, has three close contacts who recently tested positive using the rapid diagnostic test (RDT), including his two daughters aged three and five, and a 34-year-old friend whom he played basketball with.

The patient first arrived in Palawan sometime in July. He completed his mandatory 14-day quarantine period on July 24 in one of the town’s facilities.

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He has reportedly flown back to Metro Manila on August 3 to report for work. On August 5, the patient was swabbed which returned positive results on August 7.

“August 3 [siya] lumuwas ng Manila. August 5 na-swab siya at August 7 nag-positibo siya. Naka-isolate at naka-quarantine na din siya sa Manila. Nag-iwan naman siya ng problema sa barangay niya. Wala dito ang pasyente sa atin, pero ang problema nasa atin, particularly sa barangay niya,” Salvino added.

Pending local order from the town’s chief executive, Salvino said that contact tracing is being conducted to mitigate the possible COVID-19 transmission.

“Tuloy-tuloy naman ang ginagawa naming contact tracing, planning localized lockdown, nag-orient na ako kahapon sa mga barangay officials kasama ang MDRRMO doon sa mga order ng planning ng lockdown at kung ano ang dapat gawin at yong cooperation ng lahat ng kababayan natin sa Tumarbong,” Salvino said.

(With a report from Ruth Rodriguez)


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