QC residents who went to Feast of Black Nazarene urged to take Covid-19 test
MANILA, Philippines — The local government of Quezon City on Wednesday prodded residents who attended the Feast of the Black Nazarene in Manila last January 9 to undergo free COVID-19 testing if they are experiencing symptoms of the disease.
Dr. Rolly Cruz, head of the City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (CESU), said those who participated in the event and are now having symptoms like flu and cough to coordinate with their barangay officials.
“The barangays then will refer them to the nearest testing sites and health centers where they can undergo free COVID-19 testing,” he added.
According to Mayor Joy Belmonte, she already requested the Manila Police District (MPD) for a list of Quezon City residents who signed the health declaration form during the feast. She said the local government will then direct the concerned barangay to monitor the Quezon City dwellers in the list.
“As a precautionary measure, we encourage our residents who attended the celebration to have themselves immediately checked for COVID-19 in our testing centers for free,” Belmonte said.
“Hindi natin puwedeng isantabi ang posibilidad na nagkahawahan dahil sa dami ng dumalo. Mabuti nang makasiguro upang hindi natin mahawa ang ating pamilya at mga kasama natin sa komunidad,” she added.
(We can’t set aside the possibility that there was transmission since many people attended the event. It is better to make sure that we will not infect our family and the people in our community.)
The Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday asked devotees and churchgoers who went to Quiapo Church and its vicinity for the annual Feast of the Black Nazarene to go into self-quarantine.
DOH also advised those who took part in the celebration to closely monitor themselves for any symptoms of COVID-19.
Despite the cancellation of the yearly Traslacion or the grand parade of the image of the Black Nazarene, many devotees still flocked to Quiapo Church to attend any of the 15 Masses held for that day.
Only 400 persons were allowed inside the Church to hear the Mass.
“Based on reports, around 500,000 devotees flocked to Quiapo Church and nearby areas to attend the 15 Holy Masses celebrated in lieu of the traditional Traslacion or the procession of the Black Nazarene that was cancelled to avoid the spread of the virus,” the Quezon City government said.
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