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Vico Sotto readies Dahlia Hotel in Pasig as quarantine facility

JC Gotinga
Vico Sotto readies Dahlia Hotel in Pasig as quarantine facility
(UPDATED) 'Strict supervised 14-day quarantines of PUMs and PUIs with mild to moderate symptoms is one way we can minimize the community risk,' says Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Pasig City is quite known for its motel strip, and the local government is taking advantage of this by using one of the establishments as a quarantine area for people being monitored for the novel coronavirus.

“Dahlia Hotel Pasig has now been converted into a quarantine facility,” Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto tweeted on Thursday evening, March 19. (READ: #ProtectVico trends as netizens defend Pasig mayor’s coronavirus measures)

The motel will serve as an isolation area for persons under monitoring (PUMs) and persons under investigation (PUIs) for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

“Ayon sa mga eksperto, mataas ang tsansa na dadami pa ang kaso ng COVID-19. Kailangan handa tayo (According to experts, chances are high that cases of COVID-19 will still multiply. We should be prepared),” Sotto said.

“Strict supervised 14-day quarantines of PUMs and PUIs with mild to moderate symptoms is one way we can minimize the community risk,” he added.

Dahlia Hotel can accommodate at least 300 people at once, and the local government will only pay for water and electricity consumption for its use, Sotto said, thanking the establishment’s owners for lending it to the city.

“The mayor’s office discussed this on Monday, did all the necessary preparations on Tuesday, and had the facility occupied by Wednesday morning. Health personnel are present to supervise the quarantine. All needs are covered, including toys and house parents to ensure the welfare of children,” said Ron Angeles of the city’s Public Information Office.

The city government is preparing a similar facility for the same purpose, Angeles added.

The Department of Health (DOH) classifies people who possibly contracted the virus as either a PUM or PUI.

A PUI is someone who has two or all of the following: 

  • History of travel in the past 14 days to countries with local transmissions and risk of importation of the virus
  • History of exposure to a confirmed case
  • Symptoms of respiratory illness (cough and/or colds) and/or fever

Meanwhile, a PUM is someone who has a history of travel to a virus-hit country or exposure to a coronavirus patient.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III himself became a PUM on Thursday, after he was exposed 3 times to a senior DOH official who has since tested positive for the virus.

As of Thursday, the Philippines has had 217 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 17 deaths, and 8 recoveries.

Across the globe, more than 217,000 people have contracted the disease, and over 9,000 have died of it. The virus has reached 157 countries. – Rappler.com

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JC Gotinga

JC Gotinga often reports about the West Philippine Sea, the communist insurgency, and terrorism as he covers national defense and security for Rappler. He enjoys telling stories about his hometown, Pasig City. JC has worked with Al Jazeera, CNN Philippines, News5, and CBN Asia.