CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews / 27 May) – The city would likely revert to general community quarantine (GCQ) following a spike in COVID-19 cases that has threatened to overwhelm local hospitals.
Mayor Oscar Moreno said he wrote to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases to raise the city’s quarantine status to GCQ.
“I have no choice but to ask the IATF to raise the quarantine level following the recent increase of COVID-19 cases here,” Moreno told reporters during the daily press briefing here.
He said he expects the IATF to grant his request and declare the city under GCQ on its next announcement on June 1.
The active cases in Cagayan de Oro reached 1,085 as of May 27 with 111 new infections recorded by the City Health Office.
Health officials monitored 11 deaths in the past 24 hours including prominent residents like Barangay Macasandig Chair Aaron Neri and lawyer Mateo Deligencia who died of complications from COVID-19 on Thursday morning.
This brought the number of deaths in the city to 296 since the pandemic began last year.
Dr. Joselito Retuya, the city’s chief epidemiologist said some 300 patients are now confined at the Northern Mindanao Medical Center and other hospitals in the city.
At the JR Borja General Hospital, COVID-19 patients waiting for admission were staying in tents in the parking lot.
Under a GCQ, elderly persons aged 60 years old and above and persons below 20 years old are no longer allowed to go outside their residences, enter shopping malls, go to beaches and parks.
Non-contact sports like golf and tennis and going to fitness gyms are also prohibited.
Gatherings are strictly limited to only 10 persons.
Public transport are allowed but with strict health protocol requirements for passengers, who should wear facemasks and face shields.
Travel to and outside Cagayan de Oro are still allowed provided strict protocols are followed.
Employers are encouraged to allow their employees to work from home. (Froilan Gallardo/MindaNews)