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Gwen says more Cebuanos dying from illnesses other than Covid-19

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CEBU CITY – Provincial and district hospitals in Cebu have recorded other diseases as leading causes of hospitalization and deaths of people than the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

Governor Gwendolyn Garcia said in a late Wednesday presser that reports from chiefs of provincial and district hospitals pointed to hypertension and cardiovascular disease as top causes of death of patients, citing 2018 record of 1,088 fatalities due to these illnesses.

“In our two months of monitoring Covid-19 since March 23, we have recorded only 127 confirmed cases. Just yesterday (March 26), our RHUs (rural health units) registered 351 patients treated and 60 patients admitted because of other illnesses,” Garcia said in Cebuano.

The province, she said, has sent a total of 2,316 swab specimens to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center – Subnational Laboratory (VSMMC-SNL) and Cebu TB Reference Laboratory Molecular Facility for COVID-19 Testing (CTRL-MFCT) from March 23 to May 26.

About 94.5 percent of the 2,316 swab samples were tested negative of coronavirus as only 127 have positive results, she said.

“Of our 127 coronavirus cases, only 12 are in the hospital and one under isolation at the CPRDC (Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center) and 27 have recovered and 18 deaths. The rest (69) are all asymptomatic patients,” she said.

According to Wednesday data, the province has four positive results. However, Garcia said only one is a new confirmed Covid-19 case as the three were results of a repeat of previous tests.

The new confirmed case is a 30-year-old female from the northern town of Consolacion. She is now admitted at the VSMMC.

The four positive results were part of the 393 swab samples from the cities of Cebu (287), Mandaue (26), Lapu-Lapu (37) and the towns and component cities of the province (43) on Wednesday, she said.

Of the 393 swab samples, the VSMMC-SNL and CTRL-MFCT recorded only 50 positive results with Cebu City having the highest number of positive cases of 43; followed by Mandaue, 3; and one new case from another area in the province plus three retests.

Even though the entire island province has a total of 2,577 Covid-19 cases, Garcia said it is rather alarming to see other diseases causing the deaths of patients.

Cebu City still has the highest number of coronavirus cases with 2,126; followed by Mandaue with 238 cases; Lapu-Lapu with 86; and 127 for the other 44 towns and six components cities.

The Provincial Health Office (PHO) is yet to consolidate updated records of deaths caused by other illnesses but the governor vowed to present comparative analysis between the Covid-19 and other illnesses “on a daily basis” to allay the fears of the public amid the pandemic.

Garcia said she also wants to know how many of the 18 Covid-19 fatalities from the province died with coronavirus as the real cause and how many of them died with Covid-19 as incidental cause, citing the case of a resident in Carmen town who died due to motorcycle accident but later on tested positive of coronavirus.

The 18 fatalities who tested positive of Covid-19 had comorbidities like chronic kidney disease, acute renal failure, severe anemia, blood disorder, myocardial infarction, severe trauma due to accident, septic shock, hypertension and cervical cancer, she said. (PNA)