BY CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO
A total of 2,724 Bacolod residents were tested for COVID-19 as of yesterday as mass testing in different parts of the city began.
Bacolod City Health Office records showed that about 1,295 call center agents, DepEd personnel, government workers, and bank employees were tested in separate venues Thursday aside from the testing centers designated for the barangays.
There were also 1,429 specimen collected from the 18 testing centers for Bacolod barangays considered as “high risk” areas yesterday.
The Negros Occidental provincial government is helping Bacolod with the mass testing by providing medical technicians as well as test kits and consumables, Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz said.
It has provided Bacolod with 2,730 swabs exceeding the 2,500 earlier pledged by Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson and provincial economic consultant former Rep. Alfredo “Albee” Benitez, he said.
Bacolod Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, chairman of the city’s Inter-Agency Task Force against COVID-19, said that despite its being voluntary, they hope to reach their target of testing 5,000 Bacolod residents.
Familiaran said the lockdown yesterday was successful with the cooperation of everyone.
Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia issued an executive order Thursday imposing a citywide “four-day no movement” period in Bacolod City starting yesterday until Monday.
The three major public markets were closed while many stores did not open. Few public utility jeepneys were seen plying the almost empty city streets of Bacolod.
Check points manned by police personnel were also set up in some areas of the city.
Meanwhile, Familiaran said Barangay Captain Emelda Banguanga of Barangay 2 and Singcang Barangay Captain Rosinie Distrito are now recovering after being hospitalized for COVID-19 virus.
Both are supported by ventilators.
Banguanga was taken to a hospital Wednesday after experiencing difficulty of breathing. She is the fourth barangay captain in Bacolod to be infected with the virus after Banago Barangay Captain Ricky Mijares, Mansilingan Barangay Captain Rudolfo Pico Jr/, and Distrito.
Being frontliners, Familiaran reminded the barangay officials to be extra careful. He said they should not ignore any symptom and should seek medical attention as early as possible.*