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Belmonte wants strict monitoring of closed-setting facilities 

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The Quezon City government is strictly monitoring all closed-setting facilities situated in the city after 22 more individuals tested positive for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in another religious convent, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

Hindi pwedeng reactive tayo sa tuwing magkakaroon ng outbreak. Nakikita natin na sunud-sunod na ang mga reported outbreak sa ganitong high-risk facilities, unahan na natin (We cannot stay reactive every time an outbreak happens. Several outbreaks already took place in this high-risk facilities, let’s get ahead of them). We will test them and check if they have strict health protocols in place,” Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte said in a statement issued on Thursday.

Some 22 Covid-19 positive cases were reported on Wednesday at the Convent of Holy Spirit in Barangay Immaculate Conception, of which 13 are nuns while the nine others are staff, including the first index case that was recorded.

An index case is the patient in an outbreak who is first noticed by health authorities.

This is the second convent in the city where a Covid-19 outbreak was reported. The first was the Convent of the Religious of the Virgin Mary congregation located along N. Domingo Street, Barangay Kaunlaran in Cubao where 114 individuals were reported to be positive for Covid-19.

The Convent of the Holy Spirit has a population of 90 individuals, according to City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CESU) chief Dr. Rolando Cruz.

Cruz said that CESU conducted a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) or swab test on 46 individuals last Sept. 10. However, the rest of the convent’s residents refused to be tested during that time.

The Covid-19 swab test of the 46 yielded 21 positive test results, in addition to the index case, while 25 have tested negative.

“(As) per our agreement with them, they will take care of the testing of the remaining 44 individuals and they will send us the results as soon as they come out,” Cruz said.

He added that of the 22 recorded positive, 14 are fully vaccinated while the rest have not received any vaccine yet.

Belmonte tasked CESU to check on the vaccination status of all the individuals staying or working in all of the other closed-setting facilities in the city and convince those who have not received the Covid-19 jabs yet to get vaccinated.

Kailangan nating malaman kung may bakuna ba ang mga ito at gaya ng ginawa natin sa ibang nursing homes at opisina, tayo na ang pupunta sa kanila para sila ay mabakunahan kung marami sa kanila ang takot lumabas o ayaw lumabas ngayong panahon ng pandemya (We have to know if they already received the vaccine, and like what we did in the other nursing homes and offices, we will be the one to go to them just to get them vaccinated, especially if they are afraid to go out at this time),” she said.

Among the closed-setting facilities and considered to be high-risk areas in the city that needs to be monitored are the convents, orphanages, nursing homes, homes for the aged, rehabilitation centers, shelters for street children, halfway homes for victims of violence and abuse, hospices, and correctional facilities, among others.

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