5 Beta, 1 Alpha variant cases detected in Sta. Barbara

PHOTO CAPTION: Sta. Barbara mayor Rema Somo reported that 5 cases of COVID-19’s Beta variant and another one of the Alpha variant kind were detected there in May. (N. Glenn Aragon/Photo courtesy of the Sta. Barbara LGU Facebook page)

STA. BARBARA, ILOILO–Five, not just four, cases of the Beta variant of the coronavirus disease (COVID)-19 were detected in Sta. Barbara town recently.

Mayor Rema Somo of the said second district municipality said it was only yesterday when the fifth case of the Beta variant was reported to her.

Of the five Beta variant cases, four are members of a single family who were infected when a friend from Manila visited them recently. The said visitor later tested positive for the virus.

From the four family members who got infected with the virus, two of the cases, both senior citizens and with existing co-morbidities, died. The three other cases, meanwhile, were able to recover and are now out of harm’s way.

In addition to the Beta variant cases, Somo reported that an Alpha variant case was detected in the town last May with the patient having since recovered from COVID-19.

POSITIVE CASES SURGE

Meanwhile, Somo said, she has ordered additional beds in the town’s quarantine facilities after positive cases have been surging in the municipality in the last several months.

According to her, the Sta. Barbara local government has also purchased additional oxygen tanks for the use of the town’s Ligtas COVID-19 Center.

She expressed her gratitude to the Department of Health for providing the town with an additional ambulance complete with medical equipment to respond to COVID-19 emergencies.

The ambulance, she said, has been instrumental in pulling out residents showing signs of infection from their homes and into a quarantine facility before they could further transmit the virus.

In addition, two groups make the rounds of the public market to issue citation tickets against those in violation of the minimum public health protocols such as the wearing of face masks and face shields in public.

The latest data from the Department of Health’s Center for Health Development Regional Office 6 puts Iloilo Province at the top of the region’s active cases list with 2,836, with Sta. Barbara consistently being one of the province’s 42 municipalities and one component city with higher active COVID-19 case counts. (N. Glenn Aragon/iNEWS)

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