Quezon City gov’t urges DOH to review case reporting system
MANILA, Philippines — The Quezon City government on Sunday urged the Department of Health to review its case reporting system, as lack of information in the database hampers its contact tracing efforts on coronavirus disease patients.
Mayor Joy Belmonte made this call after a COVID-19 patient posted on social media about the lack of contact tracing efforts from the city government on her and her family.
However, Belmonte said records showed that the patient never self-reported to the local government unit, and relied solely on the DOH, which in turn did not have data on the patient’s contact details on the COVID KAYA system for the LGU to extract.
“We again reiterate our call for the DOH to review their COVID KAYA system because this is where we get our information for our contact tracing efforts. Incomplete data is like looking for a needle in a haystack,” she said in a statement.
COVID KAYA is a case and contact tracing reporting system provided by the DOH for epidemiology and surveillance officers, health care providers and laboratory-based users.
According to Belmonte, the laboratory where the said COVID-19 patient was tested neither provided the results, address, and other details to the COVID KAYA system nor reported to the local government unit.
“We urge DOH to act on this immediately and call the attention of all laboratories and hospitals to submit complete information so that we from the LGU can do our task properly,” the mayor said.
“How can our health workers do their jobs if we are not receiving enough information regarding the patients?” she added.
Meanwhile, Belmonte said the COVID KAYA system also tagged some 8,000 individuals as Quezon City residents but provided no other information that could help contact tracers confirm their existence or whereabouts.
She noted that this further increased the discrepancy between the validated LGU data which was at 9,817 as of August 21 and the DOH data, which showed that there are 17,907 COVID-19 positive patients in the city on the same date.
Belmonte pointed out that there is an “urgent need” for the DOH to review its database so that all local government units which depend on it for contact tracing efforts can efficiently do their jobs.
Belmonte recently issued a memorandum ordering laboratories, hospitals and disease reporting units to immediately inform the City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (CESU) about COVID-19 positive patients for quick action and to avoid delays in contact tracing.
In a separate order, she also encouraged residents and employees working in the city to self-report all probable or confirmed COVID-19 cases to the CESU or the Barangay Health Emergency Response Team.
Self-reporting can be done by sending an email to [email protected] The contact tracing team can be reached through its hotline numbers 8703-2759, 8703-4398, 0916-122-8628, 0908-639-8086, 0931-095-7737 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday, and through email addresses [email protected] and [email protected]
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