First Omicron variant case in Region 6 reported in Bacolod

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – There is nothing to worry.

This was the assurance made by Dr. Chris Sorongon, deputy for medical and data analysis of the Bacolod Emergency Operations Center (EOC), after the first case of the Omicron variant of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Western Visayas was reported here.

Sorongon noted that the 38-year-old overseas Filipino worker (OFW) has recovered from the virus when he traveled to Bacolod on Dec 31, 2021.

Sorongon said the OFW, who is a resident of Pampanga, came from the United States and arrived in Manila on Dec 15.

Two days later, he developed symptoms and was subjected to RT-PCR test on Dec 20, wherein he yielded positive for COVID-19.

He was released from the quarantine facility after he recovered from the virus. He then traveled to Bacolod to visit his wife, who is working here.

But Sorongon said the result of the genome sequencing on his specimen that was positive for the Omicron variant came out on Jan 1, 2022.

The OFW went straight to a hotel facility when he arrived here and did not roam around the city as the couple only met at the hotel.

Only the OFW’s wife was included in the contact tracing here, Sorongon said, although extensive contact tracing still continues.

The OFW was asymptomatic and was subjected to a repeat RT-PCR test.

Sorongon stressed that the OFW did not leave the hotel upon his arrival here and that it’s not a case of local transmission.

“We have controlled and contained the situation,” he added.

He appealed to the National Inter-Agency Task Force (NIATF) to wait for the results of the genome sequencing of travelers particularly from red countries so that it won’t create panic to the people in provinces.