Davao Region records 59 COVID-19 cases, including eight health workers

Mar. 31, 2020

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) Region 11 confirmed Wednesday that cases of COVID-19 transmission have risen to 59 in this region,
including eight health workers.

Annabelle Yumang, DOH 11 Regional Director said the increase in the number of cases are results of the tests conducted by the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC), which is now a sub-national laboratory that can process at least an average of 60 tests a day.

Yumang said of the 50 cases in the region, 20 had travel history while 11 had attended the cock-derby held early in March.

Three others were exposed to COVID-19 patients, one attended a wedding, eight cases of local transmission and seven had no data.

Thirty patients are admitted to the SPMC, the region’s referral medical facility for COVID-19 patients, while 35 persons under investigation are also admitted.

Eight of the confirmed cases are health workers, five of them working at SPMC.

SPMC Chief Leopoldo Vega said these health workers breached protocol by not wearing protective equipment when they revived a patient they assumed was not infected by COVID-19.

The three other health workers who are not SMPC staff transferred a COVID-19 patient to SPMC.

“That’s why we reiterate to all front liners to think that all patients are infected and ensure full protection to health workers from contamination through the wearing of personal protective equipment (PPE’s),” Vega said.

Dr. Vega explained that the use of PPE’s among health workers varies on the level of COVID-19 infection.

He said the SPMC can use at least 25 PPE’s per day for a severe and critical patient while 15 PPE’s for a moderate case.

“We received PPE’s from donations and the national government. However, sustaining it may be a problem that’s why we are thinking of getting a steady supply of it through procurement maybe this week. As of now, we prioritize giving the PPE’s to those who are in the frontline,” Vega said.

Davao Region has reported 11,453 PUI’s, seven recoveries, and eight fatalities as of March 31. (davaotoday.com)

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