Bukidnon

Governor Zubiri wants Bukidnon under GCQ

Bobby Lagsa
Governor Zubiri wants Bukidnon under GCQ

Two farmers ride their horses along the Talakag-Lantapan Road with the Mount Kalatungan Range National Park at this backdrop in Bukidnon province. Local officials want the province placed under under General Community Quarantine (GCQ).

Bobby Lagsa/Rappler

Bukidnon Governor Jose Maria Zubiri asks for stricter quarantine restrictions after COVID-19 infections in the province surged by over 200% in the last week of May

Bukidnon Governor Jose Maria Zubiri has asked the government’s COVID-19 task force (IATF) to raise the level of the province’s quarantine status due to an increase of more than 200% in coronavirus cases in May.

Zubiri on Wednesday, June 9, said he signed the provincial IATF resolution that recommended the stricter general community quarantine (GCQ) from the present modified GCQ classification of the province.

The recommendation made on Monday, June 7, came after provincial health officer Dr Gary Guido Tabios Jr described Bukidnon as a “high risk” province when it registered an over 200% spike in cases during a two-week period that ended on May 27.

Bukidnon counted 32 new cases, 7 COVID-19 deaths, and 1,132 active cases as of Thursday morning, June 10.

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Bukidnon hospital locks down over fears staff, patients caught COVID-19

Bukidnon hospital locks down over fears staff, patients caught COVID-19

At least one provincial government-run hospital in Maramag town was forced to lock down for an indefinite period this week after its staff and patients were exposed to the deadly virus. Many of its staff were forced to go on quarantine.

Zubiri asked private hospitals to increase their bed capacities for COVID-19 patients after the Bukidnon Provincial Medical Center (BPMC) reported that it has been operating at full capacity already.

He said the areas of concern in Bukidnon include Valencia City, and the towns of Manolo Fortich, Talakag, and Kibawe, where stricter quarantine measures were needed.

Northern Mindanao hospitals in full capacity

Other hospitals elsewhere in Northern Mindanao were also running out of spaces like their Bukidnon counterparts.

The Mayor Hilarion A Ramiro Sr., Medical Center in Ozamiz City, for instance, has been operating at full capacity for over a week already, said Dr Jesus Martin Sanciangco, the hospital chief.

We are in a crisis. We are already in a state of calamity.

Cagayan de Oro Mayor Oscar Moreno

“Our COVID and extension wards have been full since June 1,” Sanciangco said.

Dr Francis Christian Cortes, the hospital’s COVID-19 task force coordinator, said 73 of the 85 beds allocated by the hospital for COVID-19 patients were already occupied when he last checked.

Cortes said it was painful to think that one of the ways a bed becomes available is when a patient dies.

Cagayan de Oro Mayor Oscar Moreno said he was worried because once the hospital systems in other cities and provinces in Region 10 become overloaded, patients would be brought to the state-run Northern Mindanao Medical Center (NMMC) in his city. The NMMC is the region’s primary COVID-19 referral hospital.

“We are in a crisis. We are already in a state of calamity,” Moreno said. – Rappler.com