Basilan records first COVID-19 case

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews / 28 May) – Basilan province recorded its first COVID-19 case on Wednesday, bringing to 24 the total number of persons afflicted  with the highly contagious disease in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

The Task Force Covid-19 Basilan headed by Gov. Jim Salliman announced on Wednesday that its first case is a 47-year old male from Barangay Lebbung in Tipo-tipo town who regularly travels from Basilan to Zamboanga City for dialysis. The patient has pre-existing medical condition, chronic kidney disease, secondary to diabetes mellitus nephropathy.

Salliman said contact tracing is being done to determine who were in close contact with the patient.

The local government of Tipo-tipo, in a statement urged the public to “stay at home, refrain from going outside, observe strict physical distancing and refrain from believing and spreading fake news.”

In his May 27 report to Naguib Sinarimbo, BARMM Minister of Interior and Local Government, Nixon Alonzo, head of Basilan’s Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) said medical responders from the Provincial Health Office and the PDRRMO transported to Zambanga City on Tuesday night the 47-year old patient from Bohe Lebbeng in Tipo-tipo town, then considered a COVID-19 probable case after testing positive during a rapid diagnostic test.

A swab sample from the patient was brought to the ZCMC for confirmation and the result of the test done through RT-PCR (Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction) showed he tested positive for COVID-19.

As of May 27, the Basilan Task Force “Bawal COVID-19” reported one confirmed case in the province and 19 suspected cases.

Meanwhile, the Governor’s Office confirmed the arrival from Manila of 10 returning Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).

“All 10 OFW’s were immediately transported to the holding area for screening and evaluation. After assessment and with a negative result, they were endorsed to their respective municipalities or cities,” the Provincial Government said in a statement. (Frencie Carreon / MindaNews with reports)