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BAUKO, Mountain Province – The municipal government ordered the total lockdown of its boundaries with Buguias and Mankayan towns following the sudden surge of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the two neighboring municipalities.
Mayor Abraham B. Akilit said the temporary implementation of the total lockdown of the town’s boundaries with the two Benguet municipalities is part of the precautionary measures to allow the smooth conduct of contact tracing on the possible close contacts of the confirmed patients not only from Buguias and Mankayan but also from Besao as some of the individuals who tested positive of the deadly virus reportedly visited a number of areas in the municipality.
However, he disclosed the main roads leading to the two municipalities will still remain open to allow the unhampered transport of food and other essential goods and authorized persons outside their residence to and from the municipality pursuant to established health and safety protocols.
“We’re now concentrating our efforts on contact tracing to allow us to ascertain the close contacts of our cases not only from Besao, but also from Buguias and Mankayan, who have reportedly frequented some of the places in our municipality for whatever purpose, We want to ensure that their close contacts are free from the virus through the conduct of the swab test to determine their health condition,” Mayor Akilit stressed.
The municipal chief executive pointed out that the people and officialdom of the municipality do not want that the gains of the implementation of the extended Luzonwide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) will be tainted with the emergence of a confirmed case from any of the 22 barangays that is why efforts are being done to ensure that the situation will be effectively and efficiently handled.
According to him, there were previous remarks that the municipality has been very strict in the enforcement of quarantine rules and regulations but municipal and barangay officials were constantly reminded to ensure that people going in and out of the municipality undergo the health protocols to prevent them from contracting the virus and eventually transmitting the same in their places.
Mayor Akilit admitted that even locally stranded individuals coming from areas with low or high number of COVID-19 cases have been mandated to undergo the required quarantine protocols because it is the only means to ensure that they do not manifest the symptoms of the virus such as fever, cough, colds, among others for them to be able to join the mainstream society.
Bauko hosts the Luis Hora Regional Memorial Hospital which now serves as the isolation facility for the province’s first COVID-19 case who comes from the nearby town of Besao and serves as the gateway of Mountain Province to Benguet and Ilocos Sur as it is traversed by a number of national rods leading to the said areas.
Akilit appealed to the close contacts of the confirmed COVID-19 patients from inside and outside the province to voluntarily visit the nearest health facility in their area and inform them on the circumstances on the extent of their contacts with the said cases so that they will be given the appropriate devise by the proper health authorities for them to easily recover. By Hent