Olongapo docs on quarantine after patient who hid travel record tested positive for COVID-19
OLONGAPO CITY – Several doctors in this city have put themselves on quarantine after a ship crewmember who later tested positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) lied about his travel history during a consultation.
The man, a diver, works for a survey ship of the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority berthed at Subic Bay, according to Wilma Eisma, chair of Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.
Eisma said the man had visited his relatives here and went for a medical checkup at St. Jude’s Hospital on March 10 due to fever and body pain after cleaning the ship’s hull with fellow divers near Grande Island.
On March 16, he again consulted doctors at the Our Lady of Lourdes International Medical Center, also in this city, but did not say that he had traveled to Mindoro before arriving in Subic Bay.
He was then admitted to the hospital on suspicion that he had dengue fever.
When he was tested negative for dengue the following day, he finally admitted traveling to Mindoro but denied leaving the ship while it was docked. Swab samples taken from him on March 21 yielded positive results for COVID-19 infection on March 29.
According to the patient’s ship commander, the man had been regularly taking “ship liberties.”
It was also learned that before he fell ill, the patient stayed with friends and family in Mindoro on March 7 and 8 before heading to Subic on March 9.
Eisma said that while personal information about COVID-19 patients are normally withheld for privacy reasons, this particular case needed the attention of concerned agencies and local government units because it could potentially increase local virus transmission.
“What also compounds the problem is that in the intervening period between his confinement and possible date of infection, he had traveled to Mindoro via Manila and Batangas to visit his family and friends there,” Eisma added.
Eisma said they had started carrying out extensive contract tracing involving the man’s relatives and those who came in contact with him.
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