ONE of the 294 vendors of Carbon Public Market who underwent a test for coronavirus disease (Covid-19) has tested positive and is considered an active case.
Three more vendors were found to be Immunoglobulins G (IgG) positive, which meant that they had recovered from a certain virus but not necessarily Covid-19.
The 294 samples were from the first batch of vendors who were tested for Covid-19 on September 30, 2020.
On October 1, another 266 vendors were tested while an additional 190 vendors also underwent testing on October 2, bringing the total number of Carbon Market vendors subjected to a PCR test and rapid diagnostic test (RDT) to 750, so far.
Of the four vendors who tested positive for Covid-19, only one is considered an active positive case as the individual was found to be positive for Immunoglobulins M (IgM), while the other three were Immunoglobulins G (IgG) positive.
To be IgG positive means the person has already recovered from a certain virus but this may not be the Sars-Cov-2, the virus that causes Covid-19.
While to be IgM positive means the person has an early-stage infection of any influenza-like virus but not necessarily Covid-19.
Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, Department of Health (DOH) Central Visayas spokesperson for Covid-19 updates, said all four individuals are being monitored for symptoms, while the vendor who was found IgM positive has been put in isolation.
“Though they might have the virus, there is a possibility that it’s a viral remnant,” explained Loreche on the three IgG positives.
Infectious disease specialist Bryan Lim said the three can return to work if they remain asymptomatic in the next 14 days.
Food provisions and assistance were given to the vendor who tested IgM positive, said
Cebu City Councilor Joel Garganera, Emergency Operations Center (EOC) deputy chief implementer.
Loreche said that for the second batch of vendors, only one group from the pooled PCR test turned out positive.
A pooled PCR test is composed of five samples taken from five individuals.
Loreche said the samples will be run again individually to detect which of the five individuals is positive for Covid-19.
The City Market Division has devised a scheme so that the stalls and stores of the vendors will continue to operate amid the testing and even when the vendors need to go on home quarantine.
The whole Carbon Market complex was also divided into five zones in case there would be need for granular lockdowns, said Lim.
Carbon is Cebu’s biggest public market.
Garganera said that after Carbon, the EOC might bring the mass testing to other markets in the city, supermarkets and malls as well as other sectors like transportation.
“We’re trying to make these places, which are frequented by people, safe,” said Garganera.
The EOC is targeting to test 2,000 Carbon Market vendors.
Meanwhile, Lapu-Lapu City health officials reported only a few tricycle drivers participated in the free Covid-19 testing offered by the City since Wednesday, Sept. 30.
Grace Mary Carungay, LapuLapu City Epidemiology and Surveillance officer, said they were targeting to test around 5,000 tricycle drivers at 500 tests per day.
But only 250 drivers underwent testing at the Hoopsdome in Barangay Gun-ob on Wednesday, while only 200 went in for tests on Thursday, October 1, Carungay said.
Due to the low turnout, Carungay said they will extend the swab testing until October 6.
Carungay believes majority of the city’s tricycle drivers are apprehensive to undergo swab testing because they fear knowing the results.
Some are also too busy with their livelihood, Carungay added.
“We are not forcing them to undergo testing but I encourage them to take the swab test. Let us give assurance to our passengers that the drivers in our city are Covid-free,” Carungay said. (JJL/GCM/JKV)