CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews / 30 July) – A family of seven from Barangay Balulang, among them grandparents and an 11-month old baby, were brought to an isolation facility on Thursday after they were found to have been infected with the virulent Delta variant of COVID-19.
Another Delta variant case was also reported from Barangay Upper Canitoan, bringing the total number of Delta variant cases in the city to 13, from five cases discovered two weeks ago.
Dr. Ted Yu of the Cagayan de Oro health office said the seven members of the family, including the 62-year-old grandfather and his 57-year-old wife, an 11-month old baby and a six-year old girl, were immediately placed under isolation in an undisclosed temporary treatment and monitoring facility here.
Yu said the family members tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this month and were isolated but were sent home on July 18 after testing negative.
“We had to ask them to return to the isolation facility,” Yu told reporters in a press briefing on Thursday.
He said results from the Philippine Genome Center about the family’s infection with the Delta variant were relayed to them only on July 28. Sample specimens from COVID-19 patients are sent to the Center in Diliman, Quezon City for whole genome sequencing to determine if they were infected by variants. The process takes a few weeks.
Mayor Oscar Moreno immediately ordered health officials to check if the highly infectious Delta variant had spread to the neighbors of the family in Barangay Balulang here
Moreno said that if the deadly variant has spread, he would order a granular lockdown of Barangay Balulang to stop the spread.
“This is a sufficient warning that a local transmission is spreading,” Moreno said.
Aside from the family in Balulang, the city health office also found another Delta variant case residing in barangay Upper Canitoan.
The discovery of new Delta variant cases came as President Rodrigo Duterte approved the extension of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) classification of Cagayan de Oro Wednesday until August 7 as COVID-19 cases continued to rise in the past weeks.
ECQ is the most restrictive quarantine classification.
The ECQ classification of Gingoog City where one case of Delta variant was reported earlier this month, was also extended until August 7.
The province of Misamis Oriental was placed under modified enhanced community quarantine with heightened restrictions from August 1 to August 15. (Froilan Gallardo / MindaNews)