BUTUAN CITY - The northeastern Mindanao region of Caraga confirmed Monday its first case of COVID-19: an elderly resident of this city.
The 68-year-old patient went home to Butuan last March 12 from Metro Manila, which accounts for about 80 percent of the country's COVID-19 cases, said Caraga's health chief Dr. Jose Llacuna.
The patient, who also has chronic obstructive lung disease, was quarantined in his home after his Metro Manila trip and was later confined to the Caraga Regional Hospital, Llacuna said.
The patient is in stable condition. He received his positive test results for the respiratory disease on Monday, said the doctor.
Authorities, he added, would trace individuals who came in close contact with the patient.
Llacuna urged the public to refrain from panicking and instead practice physical distancing, eat nutritious food, wash their hands frequently and take vitamin C.
The Philippines on Sunday confirmed 152 new cases of the disease, which brought the nationwide total to 3,246. The tally included 152 deaths and 64 recoveries.
The cases could continue spiking following the recent delivery of test kits and the accreditation of additional screening laboratories, the health department earlier said.
Report from Lorilly Charmane Awitan, ABS-CBN News