Coronavirus disease cases in Cagayan de Oro could reach 26 if confirmatory swab tests on big company employees yield positive

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By MDN Digital News Team
June 21, 2020

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CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - The number of coronavirus disease positive in the city could rise anytime soon, if the confirmatory swab tests on six employees of a big corporate company in the city will also yield positive.

The six employees have already yielded positive during a privately-run rapid tests but those were not confirmatory, says Dr. Joselito Retuya, chief epidemiologist at the City Health Office (CHO) The six employees, Retuya said, have still to undergo the confirmatory reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing that is going to be  executed by the by the Department of Health regional office 10 (DOH-10).

Retuya urged private companies to coordinate with the City Health Office whenever they plan to administer covid-19 rapid testing on their employees so that they won't face sanctions from the law.

Retuya said although all of the six employees tested positive of the rapid testing but said results were not conclusive since the final confirmatory will be done based on 
reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

The City's epidemiologist said all of them are now at the city's isolation facility and swab samples were already taken and only waiting for the final results. If they still yielded positive of the confirmatory tests, then massive contact tracing will also be conducted.

Also during the press conference, City Health Officer Dr Lorraine Nery they were not informed that a rapid-testing will be conducted on six employees of a big corporate company based in the city. 

She said other licensed health professionals may administer the rapid antibody tests, provided that they wear appropriate PPRs and they are supervised by a licensed medical doctor.

However, she said, those engaged in the rapid testing must know how to handle once the result comes out. “This failure to comply with their responsibilities, it’s a violation of Republic Act 11332,” she concluded.

Meanwhile, Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar Seriña Moreno lambasted officials of the big company for their failure to coordinate with them the reported rapid testing conducted to six of their employees suspected to have been contaminated by covid-19.

“It is irresponsible for them to conduct the tests and then leave the employees to fend for themselves,” the mayor angrily said.

He said his office has already sent an official communication, asking top executives of the big company to explain why they should not be sued and held liable for their violations of the protocols on covid-19. 

“These companies are reckless. What they have done could spread the virus in the city,” the mayor warned during the press briefing.


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