By Dolly Yasa
BACOLOD City – Inbound passengers from Alert Level 3 areas in the country are required to present a negative RT- PCR test before they are allowed entry to the province of Negros Occidental and this city.
This is contained in separate executive orders issued by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Mayor Evelio Leonardia as a measure to contain the resurgence of COVID-19 cases.
Lacson’s EO 21-61-A required inbound travelers to Negros Occidental, whether vaccinated or not, from areas under Alert Level 3 to present a negative RT-PCR test result not later than 72 hours prior to approval of their S-Pass.
The requirement took effect Jan 9, 2022.
Leonardia issued EO 1, series of 2022 which implemented restrictions on travelers entering the ports and areas of jurisdiction of Bacolod City.
The EO required inbound travelers to also present a negative RT- PCR test obtained within 72 hours before their arrival date.
Lacson said the negative RT-PCR test result required from inbound travelers forms part of precautionary measures against the spread of the Omicron variant.
Active cases in Bacolod doubled from 16 to 34 Wednesday night, according to Em Legaspi- Ang, executive director of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC).
Dr. Rosalie Deocampo, EOC contact tracing cluster head, said those infected have a travel history, or had attended holiday gatherings.
Highly urbanized cities of Bacolod and Iloilo recorded one Omicron variant infection each.
But Negros Island, including highly urbanized Bacolod City, as well as Panay province are still under Alert Level 2.
Lacson also said there is no need yet to close the border of Negros Occidental to Negros Oriental as of this time.
“We will decide again if it will increase,” he added, apparently referring to COVID-19 cases.
As of Jan 8, the Department of Health regional office reported 23 new cases in Negros Occidental and 67 in Bacolod City.