Cebu readies another quarantine area amid coronavirus threat
CEBU CITY, Philippines – The Cebu provincial government is preparing another quarantine area for Filipinos and permanent residents coming from areas covered by the government’s travel ban over the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak, following the inclusion of Taiwan in that list.
Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia said in a news conference on Tuesday, February 11, that the quarantine facility would be set up in an evacuation area in Barangay Busay, which is over 8 kilometers from the city center.
She made the announcement as the government included Taiwan in its travel ban over the coronavirus outbreak. The original ban covered only China, Hong Kong, and Macau.
With the addition of Taiwan in the travel ban, the Cebu government anticipated more people who would need to be quarantined.
Garcia said on Tuesday that the same protocols under Executive Order 5 would apply to Filipino and permanent resident passengers from Taiwan.
Under EO 5, concerned passengers would be brought to the holding area of the Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA) to check if they could just go on home quarantine.
Those deemed not fit for home quarantine would be brought to the quarantine facilities identified by the Department of Health as quarantine areas – the Eversley Childs Sanitarium in Mandaue and General Hospital and the Women and Children Development Center in Lahug.
“We do not know how many will be qualified for home quarantine. But the balance of that, it will have to be handled by the DOH quarantine facility or our own,” Garcia said.
She added that the quarantine facility in Barangay Busay was already being prepared for use in coordination with Dr Christina Giango, the Provincial Health Office Head.
The governor clarified that the Busay evacuation facility would be only be used in case of a spillover from the DOH-designated facilities.
Cebu is a major tourist destination in the country. All 3 of the confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country passed through Cebu en route to other destinations. One of them became the first COVID-19 death outside China.
COVID-19 is the name of the disease caused by the new virus.
The death toll in China as of Wednesday, February 12, stood at 1,110, while confirmed cases neared 45,000. – Rappler.com