Fifty-seven more individuals who arrived on Saipan from off-island yesterday were added to the 14-day mandatory quarantine at Kanoa Resort in Susupe, according to a source inside the facility.
The source told Saipan Tribune that there are now 84 people in quarantine, but there is no indication how many of them tourists or returning residents. There is still no confirmed novel coronavirus case in the CNMI and these people in quarantine are considered “persons under monitoring.”
Eight more people in Guam tested positive for COVID-19 yesterday, bringing the U.S. territory’s total to 45 positive cases.
According to a Joint Information Center bulletin last night, it said the Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services tested 38 individuals yesterday, March 26, 2020, and that eight tested positive and 30 tested negative.
So far, a total of 308 tests have been performed in Guam from March 12, 2020, through March 26, 2020. To date, a total of 45 cases have tested positive and 263 cases have tested negative, with one death. All 44 remaining cases are in isolation.
Press secretary Kevin Bautista said that there were actually a total of 36 individuals who were in quarantine last March 25. There was no immediate clarification about the differing numbers as the newspaper went to print.
“No one at Kanoa Resort has displayed any symptoms, therefore no test would need to be conducted,” said Bautista. He also added that the COVID-19 Task Force will continue to monitor all travelers as well as residents.
Bautista noted that, similar to Hawaii and most of the United States, general testing is not available. The Guam Public Health laboratory has been the designated testing facility for the U.S. Pacific Island and all specimens in the CNMI have to be sent to Guam for testing. But Bautista said that CHCC will soon be able to conduct testing on-island.
“The Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force and the Commonwealth Health Care Corp. are currently upgrading CNMI hospital capacity through federal assistance under this emergency. This process in procuring necessary medical equipment has been going smoothly,” he said.
If any of the individuals in quarantine exhibit symptoms, CHCC would then obtain their specimen and send it to Guam for testing.
“Everyone, from Gov. Ralph DLG Torres to Esther Muña, CHCC chief executive officer, to our first responders, are taking this threat seriously and treating the CNMI as if the virus is here. Torres and Muña will not wait for a confirmed case to push forward with additional protective measures,” said Bautista.
Additionally, the governor’s COVID-19 Task Force has initiated mission assignments that are focused on stopping the spread through an aggressive public information and social media campaign to mandatory quarantine.
Guam now has a total of 37 confirmed COVID-19 cases and one death.
In the latest case, the Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services tested 37 individuals for COVID-19 last March 25. Out of that number, five tested positive and 32 tested negative.
From March 12 to 25, a total of 270 tests were performed in Guam. A total of 233 tested negative. Of the 36 remaining cases, they are currently in isolation.
The World Health Organization has seen a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in the Pacific. As of yesterday, March 26, there are 82 COVID-19 cases in the Pacific, across five countries and territories, according to Dr. Corinne Capuano, Pacific Technical Support director and WHO representative to the South Pacific.
Of those five countries, there are 25 confirmed cases in French Polynesia, 37 confirmed cases and one death in Guam, five confirmed cases in Fiji, 14 confirmed cases in New Caledonia, and one confirmed case in Papua New Guinea.
Capuano stated that most of the governments have already established/activated a National Task Force and have declared a state of emergency after identifying confirmed cases.