BREAKING: DOH-7 logs 19 new COVID-19 cases; Cebu City reports first 2 deaths
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7) has reported 19 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) with three new fatalities in the region on Saturday, March 28, 2020.
In a statement released to members of the media, Dr. Jaime Bernadas, DOH – 7 director, said 19 of the 229 individuals who underwent COVID-19 testings at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) yielded positive of the virus.
This brings the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the region to 22. Data from DOH – 7 showed that 16 of those, who tested positive, were confined in hospitals in Cebu City.
The patients, who succumbed to the disease, had pre-existing medical conditions and were more than 60 years old, Bernadas said.
Cebu City also logged its first two deaths due to COVID-19. The disease claimed the lives of a 66-year-old female, who died on March 27, 2020, and a 65-year-old male, who died on March 23, 2020.
The other new fatality in the region was reported on March 23, 2020, and came from Negros Oriental — an 81-year-old female.
These brings the deaths in the region due to the COVID-19 at 4 — 2 new fatalities in Cebu City and 2 in Negros Oriental, the female fatality and the town councilor, who died on March 15 in Negros Oriental.
Meanwhile, the DOH – 7 reported one confirmed COVID-19 case in Cebu province (Cordova town), and Lapu-Lapu City. This means that Cebu, as an island, has a total of 19 confirmed COVID-19 cases including the first one reported in Mandaue City.
“All of the new cases are currently admitted, and as of the last health bulletin from their hospitals, majority are stable with one currently in critical care,” Bernadas said.
The youngest COVID-19 patient in Central Visayas is a 27-year-old female patient in Cordova, Cebu while the oldest is a 72 years old male patient in Cebu City.
Majority of the patients or 63 percent of those, who contracted the disease, were elderly with ages 60 years old and above, the DOH-7 reported.
Bernadas said authorities had been anticipating a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in Central Visayas, attributing it to the fact that the VSMMC had recently been given certification by the Research Institute of Tropical Medicine (RITM) to conduct COVID-19 tests, and release their respective results.
The VSMMC was identified by scientists from the national government as a sub-national level laboratory capable of doing COVID-19 tests in the Visayas area.
The DOH – 7 also said contact tracing had been conducted to track down those, who might have come in close contact with the patients who tested positive of COVID-19.
They added that the public should not panic as containment measures were already put in place, and encouraged them to avoid stigmatizing persons who contracted the disease.
“We call upon the communities that may be the residence of confirmed cases to not panic and not be violent against their contacts and their household,” Bernadas said. /dbs
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