1 tests positive for COVID-19

100-plus in quarantine
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Posted on Jun 03 2020

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One person has been confirmed to have contracted COVID-19, a female passenger on the May 28, 2020 United Airlines flight from Guam and who originated from the U.S. mainland. This raises the CNMI’s total positive COVID-19 cases to 23.

The newest patient is a 30-year-old female, asymptomatic, and has existing medical conditions, according to a news release last night by the Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force and the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.

Specimens were collected, processed, and confirmed positive at CHCC Laboratory yesterday.

The news release said that the affected individual, along with other passengers aboard the same flight, have been safely in quarantine upon their arrival and are being monitored closely by CHCC medical teams.

As of June 2, 2020, 23 people have now been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the CNMI, including five active cases, 16 recoveries, and two deaths.

After nearly a month since the resumption of United Airlines’ Guam-Saipan flights and the accompanying quarantine that passengers have to go through, the designated quarantine site of the Pacific Islands Club Saipan in San Antonio received an additional 30-plus passengers last June 1.

Although the numbers weren’t specific on how many flew in two days ago, Patrick Guerrero, the governor’s authorized representative, said that there is a total of 170 guest that are at PIC right now and the need for these quarantine facilities, including the Alternate Care Site at Kanoa Resort in Susupe, will continue.

According to Guerrero, there are a total of 224 rooms at Kanoa Resort and 308 rooms at PIC. Both designated quarantine/isolation sites have not been maxed out but have come close.

“When we opened up Kanoa in late March, it was under the Federal Emergency Management Agency program called non-congregates shelter,” said Guerrero. This means that, before it became an official alternate care site, the hotel itself was reserved for health and medical-related needs such as isolation and quarantine resulting from the public health emergency.

“We’re separating incoming passengers that we hope are not carrying the virus versus those that are infected and are under the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.’s watch,” said Guerrero.

As far as funding, based on federal regulations, Guerrero said that the use for PIC and Kanoa Resort are for a 90-day period and can be terminated at any time.

“We have used Kanoa for just a little over 60 days now, as well as PIC, so we are coming up for an extension if we do still have the need for [these] quarantine facilities. If not, we will be terminating the contracts, especially with the possible reopening of tourism in the CNMI,” Guerrero said. The CNMI government has set a July 15, 2020, target date to reopen the CNMI to tourists but Gov. Ralph DLG Torres had said that this is a moving target.

COVID-19 in Guam

The Department of Public Health and Social Services in Guam tested 27 individuals for COVID-19 last June 1; 27 tested negative and zero tested positive.

To date, there have been 175 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Guam, with five deaths, 145 released from isolation, and 25 active cases.

Justine Nauta
Justine Nauta is Saipan Tribune's community and health reporter and has covered a wide range of news beats, including the Northern Marianas College and Commonwealth Health Care Corp. She's currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Rehabilitation and Human Services at NMC.

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