Two female American nationals who are on vacation in Bohol have been declared as the latest persons under investigation for the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), increasing the total number of PUIs in the province to four.
The Capitol’s anti-nCoV technical working group spokesperson Doctor Cesar Tomas Lopez said that two women from New York City who traveled to Beijing before arriving in Bohol exhibited flu-like symptoms.
They were confined at an isolation room at the Governor Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital in Tagbilaran City starting Wednesday.
“They came from New York City went to Beijing, China then proceeded to Manila. From Manila, they went directly to El Nido, Palawan then Coron then to Bohol,” Lopez said.
The two other PUIs were identified as a 31-year-old Chinese woman who traveled from Hong Kong to Bohol via Cebu last week and a female nurse who came in contact with the 60-year-old Wuhan woman who tested positive for nCoV and was admitted at a Bohol hospital late last month.
The two are confined at isolation wards in a private hospital.
Swab samples from all four PUIs have been submitted to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine in Muntinlupa City for confirmatory tests.
Result of the 31-year-old PUI’s first swab test has already returned negative but she was still kept in isolation pending the result of a second confirmatory test.
Lopez has earlier attributed the detection of PUIs to health authorities’ heightened monitoring and stricter protocols in suspecting patients of being infected with the disease.
Local health authorities have adopted the Department of Health’s protocol to consider those showing nCoV symptoms such as fever, coughing, and colds as PUIs when they have traveled to China and its administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macua and other countries with confirmed cases of the fast-spreading disease.
PUIs will remain isolated until two confirmatory tests of swab samples taken from them 24 hours apart would yield negative results. (with R. Tutas)