The University of Baguio, through its supportive administration, is the first identified mega - site under the Baguio City's Vaccination Action Plan. On Monday, it also hosted the first vaccination simulation program led by the City Health Services Office. (CCD/PIA CAR)

Mayor Benjamin Magalong assures the city government's readiness with Vaccination Action Plan and Operation Center and enough manpower in place. (CCD/PIA CAR)

Higher Education Institutions offering medicine and allied health programs may now open limited face-to-face classes according to Commission on Higher Education - CAR Director Danilo Bose (second left). (SCA-PIA-CAR, Benguet)

BFAR-CAR Regional Director Lilibeth Signey turned over solar-powered venturi aeration system to the fisherfolks in Barangay Santa Filomena in Calanasan to officials led by Sangguniang Bayan Member Kyle Mariah Bulut, Municipal Agriculturist Luisa Magna and fisherfolk Loreto Asuncion. BFAR-CAR photos

The Big Kettle is a new come on of the Polig's Berry Farm in Ambassador, Tublay in Benguet. It is one of the tourist attractions opened even during the General Community Quarantine. (photo courtesy of the Polig's Berry Farm)

CAR placed on high-risk epidemic level as Covid-19 cases spike

BAGUIO CITY – The Department of Health in the Cordillera Administrative Region (DOH-CAR) on Friday said the public must at all times observe the minimum health and safety protocols within the region which was placed under high-risk epidemic level due to the spike in cases in all six provinces and two cities.

 

Dr. Amelita Pangilinan, DOH-CAR assistant regional director, said local government units (LGUs) should "look into strict implementation of the minimum health standards since we have seen a lot of violators and for the low-risk areas not to be complacent”.

She said that several areas in the region that have low or no cases have started to record spike in cases due to complacency or belief that the virus will not reach their areas.

As of 6:00 p.m. on January 21, the region has recorded 94 new cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). It now has a total of 10,582 cases, including 1,687 active infections, and 140 recorded deaths.

Pangilinan said the surge in cases is still seen as a result of the high mobility of the people during the holidays with one or more close contacts infecting several others who are identified in the contact tracing process.

The doctor said that in an epidemic situation, the number of cases fluctuates thus the need for persons to always be conscious of the health and safety protocols to be able to protect themselves.

“Protect yourself, wear face mask and face shield and observe physical distancing,” she said.

During the National Task force meeting on Jan. 20, the DOH-CAR reported that the region is under the category of "high risk" epidemic level as it recorded a 2-Week Growth Rate (2WGR) of 199 percent and Average Daily Attack Rate (per 100,000 population) of 8.32.

The DOH report also shows that there are 16 LGUs in the region classified as critical epidemic areas. These are the towns of Besao, Bontoc, Sabangan, and Sadanga in the Mountain Province; Balbalan, Lubuagan, Pasil, Rizal, Tanudan, and Tabuk City in Kalinga; Atok, Itogon, Kapangan, Mankayan in Benguet; and Hungduan and Kiangan in Ifugao province.

The report added that the reasons for the increase of Covid-19 cases in the region include the people going to crowded places; close-contact setting and confined spaces; clustering in mining camp in Balbalan, Kalinga; people flocking at department stores, malls and schools in Baguio and Kalinga; church events in Rizal, Kalinga; as well as the increase in infection among health care workers which was observed in all the provinces.

Mobility of persons who are possible carriers of the virus cases from high-risk areas going to low-risk areas, border control issues and the observance of cultural practices -- wakes, engagement party, family gatherings of the community where elders are the preferred visitors -- were also seen as possible reasons in the spike of cases in the region.

It also said the non-observance of minimum public health standards as observed in most areas continue that also contributed to the spread of the infection.

Readiness to address 

Currently, there are 3,803 trained contact tracers in all local government units who make up 313 teams.

The DOH-CAR said there are 59 established temporary treatment facilities having 2,548 beds. Of the number, 750 are occupied while 1,798 are available.

For Critical Care units (CCUs), 166 are available of the 410 isolation beds; 37 of 189 ward beds; six of the 41 ICU beds; and 22 are available out of 37 mechanical ventilators.

This brings the region’s CCU situation to a high-risk category at 75.10 percent.

The Cordillera started to feel the expected effect of the holiday rush on Covid-19 cases starting Jan. 14 when it logged the first record-high single day cases of 315 new patients. A few days after, it recorded another hike with 329 cases, the highest single-day record in the region. (PNA) 

By Liza Agoot

 

Baguio

Benguet

  • La Trinidad dads bat for mental health breaks for students

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Feb. 19 (PIA) - - Local officials here see  the need for students mental health breaks  during this COVID-19  pandemic  following reported suicide cases in the municipality  

  • DOH issues license to Benguet Gen. Hospital molecular lab

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Feb 19(PIA) -- The Benguet General Hospital (BeGH) can now operate its molecular laboratory for COVID-19 testing as the  Department of Health   finally issued its license to operate.

  • Successful Valentine’s Day bloodletting in Alapang amid GCQ

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Feb. 20 (PIA)--The Philippine Red Cross – Benguet Chapter and Barangay Alapang in this capital town sustained their annual blood donation activity on Valentine’s Day amid general community quarantine status.

  • CCDC grad is Top 7 in Social Worker board exam

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Feb. 19(PIA) -- A Cordilleran is among the topnotchers in the recent Social Worker Licensure Examination.

  • PSA seeks public cooperation in nat'l ID system registration

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Feb.12 (PIA) - - The Philippine Statistics Authority – Benguet seeks the   support and cooperation of the community andbarangay officials for the smooth gathering of relevant  information in line with the government’s   Philippine Identification System (PhilSys)  project which establishes a single national ID system that would ease and simplify government and private transactions.

Mt. Province

  • Bontoc official appeals to 'kailians' to comply with public health standards

    BONTOC, Mountain Province, Feb. 8(PIA) -- A municipal councilor in this capital town is appealing to his “kailians”  or townmates to always comply with the minimum public health standards as the municipality reverts back to General Community Quarantine(GCQ)  status starting Monday(February 8). 

  • Sagada extends cultural lockdown until Feb. 11

    SAGADA, Mountain Province, Feb. 4(PIA) -- The cultural lockdown has been extended in this mountain resort due to the continuing and   expected spike in COVID-19 cases.

  • Enhanced contact tracing of COVID UK variant cases' contacts ongoing in Mt. Province

    BONTOC Mountain Province, Jan. 25 (PIA) - - The Department of Health is now doing an intensified contact tracing of  the contacts of the 12 COVID – 19 UK variant cases here as part of the   Prevent-Detect-Isolate-Treat-Reintegrate   strategy against COVID – 19.

  • NTF-BCDA conducts aggressive community testing in Bontoc

    BONTOC, Mountain Province, Jan. 26(PIA)--Bontoc residents voluntarily submit themselves to  be  swabbed for   RT-PCR testing  in the Aggressive Community Testing (ACT) being conducted by the National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19 through the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and the Bureau of Fire Protection.

  • Suspension of work at Mt. Province PLGU offices extended until Jan. 29

    BONTOC, Mountain Province, Jan. 25 (PIA) -- Governor Bonifacio Lacwasan Jr.  ordered the extension of the suspension of work in the provincial government offices   due to the increasing   COVID-19 cases and the detection of the UK variant of the COVID-19 in this capital town.

IFUGAO

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