DOH expedites contact tracing in CAR after COVID-19 UK variant detected in Bontoc, La Trinidad

BAGUIO CITY, Jan. 23 -- The Department o of Health(DO H) is expediting contact tracing operations in the Cordillera Administrative Region to contain cases of the B.1.1.7 variant also known as the UK variant detected in 13 Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the region, 12  in Bontoc, Mountain  Province and one in La Trinidad, Benguet.

Contact Tracing Czar Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong said the DOH is now organizing a team of more than 60 trained contact tracers to be fielded to the region to undertake tracing operations,  as per information from DOH Assistant Secretary Dr. Maria Francia Laxamana and DOH Epidemiology Bureau Medical Specialist IV Dr. Alethea de Guzman.

The team members who will come from Regions 1, 2 and 3 and the Regional Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (RIATF MEID) will be under the mayor's supervision.

In a press statement, the DOH said that of the 12 cases in Bontoc, seven are male and five are female. Three are aged below 18 years old and another three are above 60

The La Trinidad patient was described as a "local case" having had no travel history from outside the country. The patient is currently admitted in a Benguet Temporary Treatment and Monitoring Facility.

The country now has a total of 17 cases of the UK variant which is said to be a more contagious type.

The first case was a resident of Quezon City who had travel history in United Arab Emirates as the first case while the others were two returning overseas Filipinos  from Lebanon and one from Calamba City in Laguna who is also considered a local case.

The DOH said that apart from immediate contact tracing operations, it will also conduct an investigation to identify these cases’ exposure and travel histories as it called on the public to intensify adherence to the health protocols.

"Biosurveillance is in place, and we will continue to expand our capacities to detect all COVID variants of public health importance. The DOH calls on local government units to ensure strict monitoring and compliance to quarantine protocols in their respective localities. The DOH also reiterates that non-adherence and incorrect adherence to minimum public health standards (MPHS) are the drivers of transmission and mutation and therefore strongly urges the public to strictly and properly follow the MPHS in all settings," the department said. (Aileen P. Refuerzo/PIO Baguio)

Source: Philippines Information Agency (

Post a Comment