Town officials want granular lockdown

DALAGUETE officials in the have asked the regional and provincial Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) to place a sitio under granular lockdown after 21 of its residents were found to have been infected with Covid-19.

Pending approval from the IATF, the southern town is set to enforce a three-week lockdown in Sitio Panukdukan, Barangay Cawayan, that has a total of 206 households.

Mayor Jeffrey Belcina said he recommended the lockdown after four residents of the sitio who were found positive of Covid-19 died within days from each other between Aug. 16 and 22, 2021.

Belcina said the barangay captain of Cawayan asked him to implement the granular lockdown since Covid-19 cases continued to rise in Sitio Panukdukan.

Local transmission possibly occurred in Sitio Panukdukan, Belcina added.

Belcina said he met with the Dalaguete PNP and the rural health unit (RHU) to ask for their help in the implementation of health and safety protocols for the affected families.

He assured that affected households will be given food packs for three weeks.

Municipal Hall

Belcina also confirmed that the Municipal Hall was on lockdown last week and only resumed operations on Aug. 23, after 12 employees were infected with Covid-19.

Belcina said the infected employees have fully recovered and only a few remain in isolation.

As of Aug. 25, Dalaguete logged a total of 86 active cases. Of the number, 70 were kept in isolation while 16 were admitted in medical facilities.

Since the start of the pandemic in 2020, Dalaguete has logged 406 total recoveries and 34 deaths.

Of the 34 total deaths, more than 10 occurred in July and August this year, Belcina said.

Belcina has written the Department of Education Cebu Province seeking permission to use classrooms as isolation facilities in each barangay.

Belcina said at present, the town’s evacuation center has been converted into an isolation facility with a 30-bed capacity. This is not fully occupied.

He said infected individuals especially those from the mountain barangays preferred to be isolated in schools, which are not far from their homes.

As of Aug. 20, a total of 2,619 individuals were fully vaccinated in Dalaguete; while 873 individuals were given their first dose.

The town has a total population of 74,596. (MVE)