July 23, 2024

Following the surge of Covid-19 cases among police applicants in La Trinidad, Benguet, the municipal government unit has urged the Police Regional Office- Cordillera to strictly impose the minimum health protocols.
Mayor Romeo Salda, in a letter to PRO-Cor Director B/Gen. R’win Pagkalinawan, recommended the conduct of regular disinfection and expanded mass testing of close contacts at the Camp Dangwa compound to be conducted by the LGU contact tracing team during the pre-recruitment and training phase of new recruits.  
The Municipal Health Services Office reported that of the 65 active Covid-19 cases as of Aug. 24, 18 of them are police applicants and four are regular police personnel.
The other 43 cases are returning overseas workers, locally-stranded individuals and residents.
In an interview, Salda said there was no prior coordination from PRO-Cor that it is conducting recruitment process. The applicants, who were swabbed as part of the recruitment process, came from various provinces such as Ifugao and Cagayan who rented boarding houses in the town.
“We are not sure if they are already positive prior to entering the municipality or if they were infected during their stay here,” Salda said.
The contract tracing team has reported that some of the applicants who caught the virus are renting one boarding house at Barangay Cruz, which is near the PRO-Cor headquarters.
Salda also recommended that incoming police applicants, especially those coming from other provinces, must submit a proof of swab test results prior to their entry to the municipality. They should also go through the municipal triage area at the municipal hall for the second time, for the 14-day quarantine, documentation, and monitoring by the town’s medical personnel.
The mayor also asked for the establishment of a police quarantine facility as the Benguet General Hospital and other isolation facilities are at full capacity.
Pagkalinawan said the 18 applicants undergoing isolation can still join the training once they fully recovered.
He said the rest of the recruits already took their oath on Aug. 24 and will undergo training at the Cordillera Administrative Region Training Center in Teacher’s Camp.
PRO-Cor has yet to reply on the LGU’s recommendations. – Ofelia C. Empian