SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – – The Department of Health (DOH) Region 1 has confirmed that for the first time, the Ilocos has three persons afflicted with the dreaded COVID – 19 following the release on Friday of their test results by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM).
As of 5:00 PM on March 20, the DOH Region 1 reported that one of the persons with positive COVID – 19, is a resident of Bayambang, Pangasinan; while the other two are a husband and his wife of Caba, La Union.
The first listed positive of COVID 19 in Pangasinan was classified as a Patient Under Investigation (PUI) by a Dagupan City hospital on March 14 based on the algorithm provided by the DOH. The person was not identified by name or whether he was male or female.
According to Rheuel Bobis, the COVID-19 focal person of the DOH Region 1, the PUI was transferred to the Lung Center of the Philippines as the patient had shown severe symptoms.of the virus.
The La Union COVID-19 cases are Caba town Mayor Philip Caesar P. Crispino and his wife, Caba Councilor Donna Crispino, the first two recorded patients with the disease in the province.
In her Facebook account, Councilor Crispino announced their health status confirming that she and her husband were tested positive of COVID – 19.
“It is with great sadness that we publicly announce that we are positive of the COVID -19 as per DOH- RITM results relayed by the DOH Center for Health Region 1. We are doing this to give you the right information coming right from us, to stop rumors and fake news for the good of our municipality,” said Councilor Crispino.
“We practiced self-protection measures but still we got contaminated with minor symptoms. This shows how easily the virus is spread. But, thank God almighty, we, are in very stable condition and excellent health as 16 days have already passed since our self-imposed home quarantine,” she added.
She apologized to those who came in contact with then directly from February 29 onwards.
“We are very sorry; we never wanted this to happen,” she said.
She appealed to their constituents to follow what the government initiatives against the spread of COVID – 19; comply with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) instructions.
“Please stay at home. Be responsible. Practice mandatory home quarantine. Be calm, and let us pray harder in this most crucial time,’ she said.
Meanwhile, the DOH Region 1 also advised Ilocos residentsto practice social distancing and handwashing with soap or use alcohol-based sanitizers to avoid infection from COVID – 19.
In a related update on COVID – 19 in Region 1 as of 5:00 PM on March 20, DOH Region 1 reported a total of 133 PUIs –36 in Pangasinan, 59 in La Union, 25 in Ilocos Sur, 6 in Ilocos Norte and 7 in Dagupan City.
Of the 133 PUIs, 23 were discharged from the hospital; 43 were admitted in the hospital; 47 are presently undergoing home quarantine, and 20 have already done their home quarantine.
The province of Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur remain COVID – 19 free. (Freddie G. Lazaro)