South Cotabato confirms 2nd Omicron patient | Inquirer News
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South Cotabato confirms 2nd Omicron patient

/ 04:49 PM January 21, 2022

South Cotabato Gov TamayoGENERAL SANTOS CITY––South Cotabato province confirmed Friday its second case of the Omicron coronavirus involving a returning Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) from Saudi Arabia.

Hanah Ebeo, health education and promotion officer of the Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO), said the OFW, a 39-year-old male from Polomolok town, tested positive for COVID-19 upon arrival in Cebu on Dec. 29, 2021.

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She said the patient, who underwent a two-week mandatory quarantine, was tagged as recovered by the Cebu City health office on Jan. 13 and returned home on Jan. 15.

Genome sequencing results released Wednesday, Jan. 19, by the University of the Philippines-Philippine Genome Center confirmed that the patient had the Omicron variant, she said.

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“But he is considered fully recovered and no longer considered a threat when he arrived in the province,” Ebeo told reporters.

She said the patient and his family had not shown signs and symptoms of COVID-19 so far based on the Polomolok rural health unit monitoring.

The OFW was the second Omicron patient from Polomolok reported this week by the IPHO, which has raised the alert over the increasing infections in parts of the province.

The first patient, considered a local case, was a 15-year-old male with no travel history who tested positive for the disease on Dec. 2.

The boy, who took a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test as a requirement for travel, was tagged as fully recovered when the genome sequencing results came out on Jan. 17.

Ebeo said the boy and his family have migrated to Australia.
“(But) the tracing is ongoing for the patient’s other close contacts,” she said.

South Cotabato has been seeing an increasing number of COVID-19 infections in the past two weeks, with the active cases rising to 325 as of 4 p.m. Thursday from 44 on Jan. 4.

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A report from the Department of Health-Region 12 said the occupancy rate for COVID-19 in the six referral hospitals in the province has reached the warning zone as of Jan. 19, with 44 percent or 111 beds occupied out of the 254 ward, isolation, and intensive care unit beds.

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TAGS: COVID-19, OFW, Omicron coronavirus, Overseas Filipino worker, Regions, Saudi Arabia, South Cotabato
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