Bohol OFWs may extend quarantine period due to delay of PCR test result
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The 65 repatriated overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who arrived in Bohol province last April 28, 2020, will have to extend their quarantine period due to the delay in the release of their polymerise chain reaction (PCR) test results for the coronavirus disease.
On Tuesday, May 12, 2020, the OFWs who are billeted in three hotels in Bohol were supposed to go home to their respective families for completing the quarantine period.
But Dr. Yul Lopez, Bohol’s spokesperson on COVID-19-related matters, said the provincial government cannot risk letting them go home to their families just yet as they cannot ascertain that the OFWs are free of COVID-19.
All repatriated OFWs are fit and are not exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms except for one, who is experiencing mild colds.
The swab samples of the OFWs, along with 11 personnel who attend to to them, and 87 influenza-like illness (ILI) patients in the province, were taken last May 5.
Lopez, in a virtual presser on Tuesday afternoon, said only 76 samples have returned yet, all of which tested negative for COVID-19.
Bohol Governor Arthur Yap, in an earlier update, said the delay in the release of the test results of their samples is due to the lack of functioning PCR machines at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC).
“Tungod aning pagkadelatar sa results sa atong 65 OFWs, ato nang giadto ang atong mga OFW ug ato silang gipasabot nga without a negative PCR result, dili gyud gihapon sila nato nga papaulion sa ilang tagsa-tagsa ka mga lungsod,” Lopez said.
“Because of the delay in the release of the test results of our 65 OFWs, we have already explained to them that without a negative PCR result, we cannot let them go to their respective hometowns.”
“Ato na ning gi-relay as mga mayor, as mga municipal health officers nga maghuwat gyud ta for the protection of everybody… Only then can we release, only then can we give the clearance nga makapauli na ang atong mga OFWs,” Lopez said.
(We have relayed this position to the mayors and the municipal health officers that we really have to wait for the protection of everybody… Only then can we releas, only then can we give the clearance for the OFWs to go home.)
Lopez said the OFWs understood the position of the local health officials and agreed for the extension of their stay in the quarantine facility while waiting for their results.
Lopez said the move is also to minimize the fear of the residents in the communities where the OFWs will return to after their quarantine. /bmjo
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