In the latest bulletin of the Department of Health released last February 4, there are two (2) confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV in the country with one (1) mortality. In Ilocos region alone, three (3) patients are currently under investigation.

As the number of 2019-nCoV cases in the country is likely to rise in the next days, Dr. Otayza emphasized the need to protect local communities particularly those in the grassroots and the vulnerable ones, saying, “we should not short-change the communities that we serve as it remains our duty to develop and strengthen our capability being a front-lining facility of the Department of Health in Northern Luzon area.”

She further mentioned that once cases of the 2019-nCoV are confirmed in Ilocos Norte, patients should have the option to be treated here in the province and not to be transferred in Metro Manila.

True to this, the management of MMMH&MC, through a public advisory, reminded the public that taking care of one’s health and observing proper hygiene are the best preventive measures that one could do specially during these times. The Hospital also called on the cooperation of the public by not spreading unverified information in social media especially if these posts are not official advisories and updates pertaining to the 2019-nCoV from the designated government agencies and the Department of Health. Also, the privacy of patients should not be encroached upon. Please do not harangue hospital personnel for identities, etc. so that their energies are not dispersed.

- John Michael Mugas