Bacolod City – The provincial government of Negros Occidental has allocated P15 million for the purchase of monkeypox test kits, as the Provincial Health Office and the City Health Office of Bacolod City are now formulating uniform protocols related to the viral disease, according to Provincial Inter Agency Task Force action officer Atty. Rayfrando Diaz.
Diaz said they are now preparing for the training of some medical technologists to be undertaken by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM), to administer RT-PCR testing on monkeypox disease.
Provincial Health Officer Dr. Ernell Tumimbang earlier said that they have already identified areas of concerns, what will be done for monitoring and referrals for monkeypox swab tests.
The Cadiz District Hospital has been identified as the health facility with the quarantine or isolation area for monkeypox cases in Negros Occidental.
The Department of Health has confirmed the detection of the first monkeypox case in Iloilo.
Department of Health officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said they have not established the facts to confirm with certainty the local transmission of monkeypox in the country.
This, after the fourth case – a 25-year-old Filipino – disclosed no documented travel history to countries with confirmed cases of monkeypox.
There is no need for the implementation of a lockdown to prevent the spread of monkeypox in the country, infectious disease expert Dr. Rontgene Solante said in a televised Laging Handa public briefing.
Solante also said that monkeypox is not as highly transmissible as COVID-19 and lockdown is not the appropriate solution for it.
“The likelihood of local transmission could be there, but we will not panic. Let us strengthen the protocols in hospitals that are caring for these patients,” he added.
Solante also said contact tracing must be established for quick detection of possible cases before they develop the symptoms since the monkeypox virus has a 21-day incubation period. (Gilbert Bayoran via The Visayan Daily Star (TVDS) with report from Philippine News Agency, photo courtesy of TVDS)