Six Covid-19 PUMs in Agusan Sur cleared

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur (MindaNews / 12 March) – Six of seven persons under monitoring (PUM) for the dreaded Covid-19 in this province were cleared Tuesday while the remaining one will have to wait for the result of his test until March 15.

Dr. Jacqueline Frances Momville, provincial health officer, said all of the PUMS came from countries with confirmed cases of the disease which the World Health Organization has declared as a pandemic.

Gov. Santiago Cane Jr. submits to thermal scanning before entering the provincial capitol on Thursday (March 12, 2020). Photo courtesy of Michael Leo Cane Torralba

Two of the PUMs, both females, were traced in Bayugan City, a 22-year-old from Hong Kong and a 24-year-old from Macau, China.

One PUM, a 33-year old female in San Francisco town, came from Beijing, China. Another one is a 32-year-old female in Esperanza town who came from Hong Kong.

The fifth and sixth PUMs are a 38-year-old female in Talacogon town from Hongkong and a 31-year-old female in San Luis town who came from Huangpu, China.

The lone PUM case still awaiting result is a 52-year old male traced in San Francisco town who came from Geoje, South Korea.

They were all told to go on a 14-day home quarantine.

But it was not clear if the PUMs are foreigners who visited the country, overseas Filipino workers, expatriates or vacationers from abroad.

Responding to Presidential Proclamation 922, Gov. Santiago Cane Jr. issued Executive Order 09-20 institutionalizing precautionary measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19  and strengthening the health surveillance system of the province

“There is no cause to panic, no cause for alarm. These are precautionary measures that residents of this province should follow to prevent from being a victim of the disease,” Cane told local reporters.

The governor’s order asked residents to maintain hygiene and refrain from going to big gatherings.

The provincial government has set up checkpoints at the entry roads leading to the capitol where health workers conduct thermal scanning of all who pass by including provincial officials and employees.

Rogelio Ipanag, chief of the Provincial Correctional Security Management Office, said if the thermal scanner shows that a person’s body temperature goes beyond the normal level, he or she would be advised to undergo a medical checkup at the DO Plaza Memorial Hospital.

Cane has left the decision to cancel or continue with upcoming town festivals to the 14 mayors of the province.

So far, the local government units of Loreto, Sta. Josefa and Veruela towns have canceled their festivals.

La Paz town has not decided pending the return of Mayor Michael Lim, who was attending a meeting of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines in Manila.

Bayugan City and San Francisco town have declared a suspension of classes in all levels starting Wednesday. (Chris V. Panganiban/MindaNews)