Cebu Government Officials Says SARS-CoV-2 is Unerving

Author: Veronica Sabanillas
Post Date: July 19, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic in Region 7 is a fraction of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The virus appeared Central Visayas on February 5, 2020, when the first patient of the disease was confirmed in Bohol. Two Chinese tourists admitted in a hospital in Metro Manila both who had travel history to Dumaguete and Cebu were the first two confirmed cases in the Philippines. The third case confirmed in the Philippines, was confirmed on February 5, 2020 which was also the first confirmed case in Region 7. The patient was a 60 year old woman who have already recuperated from the disease at the time of the announcement and was allowed to return to China on January 31st. The first sample obtained from the patient on January 24 tested negative for COVID-19 but the second tests conducted tested positive for the virus. During the month of April 2020, there have been growing number of cases in Cebu. Govnerment jails also saw growing number of cases. Cebu City for a short time became the city in the country with the unbelievable number of COVID-19 cases on May 10 with 1,571 cases, surpassing Quezon City which had 1,558 cases at the time. An Overseas Filipino Worker repatriated from overseas to the province oh Bohol become its second confirmed case on May 13 after a few months of no cases. The province of Siquijor became the last province in Region 7 to log its first case in which its first two cases that of returnees from Metro Manila was declared on August 2.

As a preemtive measure against the spread of the virus, on the second week of March, the mayors of Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu, and Mandaue stopped classes in all levels for both private and public schools. Colleges, universities, and other schools, however, were instructed to implement distance education measures. Cebu Province Governor Gwendolyn Garcia declared the execution of a province-wide curfew from 10 in the evening to 5 in the morning the following day on March 15. The Mactan–Cebu International Airport and the Port of Cebu would suspend all arrivals and departures of domestic passenger travel which was also declared by the governor effective March 17 Following the execution of a general community quarantine (GCQ) in Cebu City on March 16, Cebu City Mayor Edgar Labella declared an executive order prohibiting the distribution, sale, and consumption of alcoholic beverages in all areas. On March 19, Mayor Labella instructed the provisional closure of all private establishments in Cebu City, including all malls and the Cebu City Sports Complex but excluding establishments dispensing crucial goods and services, until the end of the GCQ. On March 25, the governor of Cebu declared Executive Order No. 5-N placing the entire province under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from March 27. A private initiative called Bayanihan Cebu PH has lodged quarantine facilities known as Bayanihan Field Centers for COVID-19 patients in Cebu which are to be controlled by the Central Visayas field office of the Department of Health. The limitations have been moderated starting on the month of August 2020 and Cebu has been designated as modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).