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19 Koreans in Cebu now under self-quarantine

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - CDN Digital | February 28,2020 - 04:41 PM
DOH Central Visayas

Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH – 7) director Dr. Jaime Bernadas. | CDN Digital Photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines – Health officials in Central Visayas are now closely monitoring the conditions of 19 South Koreans from Daegu City who were among the last batch of travelers that arrived in Cebu hours before the city was subjected to a travel ban.

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, director of the Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7), said the 19 tourists from South Korea are now placed under self-quarantine after they flew in from Daegu City last February 25, 2020.

Bernadas also said the foreigners, who are now confined in separate rooms in their respective hotels in Cebu City and Lapu-Lapu City, are presently asymptomatic.

“We have traced all 26 South Koreans. We have located 19 of them, and are now under self-quarantine in their respective hotel rooms. They are asymptomatic as of now,” Bernadas said.

26 South Koreans from Daegu City, the epicenter of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in South Korea, landed in Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA) last February 25, 2020.

However, the whereabouts of seven South Koreans are still unknown as health officials cannot locate them in the accommodations they reported in their health declaration forms.

DOH – 7 has sought the assistance of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Consul of Korea to locate them, and are now investigating as to why they are nowhere to be found.

“This (missing South Koreans) is a cause of concern but not an alarming one. We will exhaust all our means to locate them,” said Bernadas.

No Contact Policy

Bernadas said there are no reports of refusal coming from the establishments were the 19 South Koreans are now staying.

He also said they encouraged hotel management teams to implement no-contact policy between the foreigners and their staff.

“We are also advising management to ensure that the staff should be wearing PPE (personal protective equipment),” added Bernadas.

Read: HRRAC on recent COVID-19 threat: ‘There is nothing to be alarmed of’

Health workers from DOH – 7 will visit these South Koreans twice daily in their rooms to check their health condition, he said. Police and barangay workers will also be tapped to keep watch on the foreigners placed under monitoring.

As of Friday, the foreigners, whose ages range between 6 years old and 66 years old, have not shown any signs or symptoms of COVID-19.

Bernadas said the tourists have the option to return to South Korea as long as they will not show any signs or symptoms of COVID -19.

“If they exhibit any symptoms of the disease, then they will be transferred and admitted to government hospitals where they will be placed under isolation. They cannot travel back to South Korea if they are symptomatic,” he said. /bmjo

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