SARS-CoV-2 in the Island of Cebu is as Alarming as Other Provinces

Author: Veronica Sabanillas
Post Date: July 21, 2021

The Covid 19 pandemic in Region 7 is a piece of the global 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 recorded 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 recorded cases in the Philippines. The first recorded case in Region 7, and the third case confirmed in the Philippines, was confirmed on February 5, 2020. At the time of the announcement of the 60-year-old woman patient, she have already recuperated from the disease 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. After March and during early April, there have been rising number of cases in the island of Cebu.

Govnerment jails also saw rising number of cases.

Cebu City for a short time became the city in the country with the largest number of Covid 19 cases on May 10 with 1,571 cases, exceeding Quezon City which had 1,558 cases at the time. An Overseas Filipino Worker repatriated from abroad to the province oh Bohol become its second recorded case on May 13 after a few months of no cases. The province of Siquijor became the final province in Region 7 to log its first case in which its first two cases that of returnees from Metro Manila was notified 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 halted classes in all levels for both private and public schools. Colleges, universities, and other schools, however, were required to execute distance education measures. Cebu Province Governor Gwendolyn Garcia notified the enactment 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 notified by the governor effective March 17 On March 16, following the enactment of a general community quarantine (GCQ) in Cebu City, Cebu City Mayor Edgar Labella notified an executive order interdicting the sale, distribution, and consumption of alcoholic beverages in all public places. Mayor Labella required the short-term closure of all private establishments in Cebu City on March 19 including all malls and the Cebu City Sports Complex but excluding establishments selling necessary goods and services, until the end of the GCQ. The governor of Cebu announced and notified Executive Order No. 5-N on March 25 which places the all province under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from March 27. Bayanihan Cebu PH which is a private initiative lodged quarantine facilities known as Bayanihan Field Centers for COVID-19 patients in Cebu which are to be run 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 tagged as modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).