The Department of Health Northern Mindanao Center for Development OIC-Director David A. Mendoza together with several of their nurses made a courtesy call in the PMO MO/C on 11 February 2020 for inter-office coordination for the deployment of nurses in the Port of Cagayan de Oro as part of the heightened measures against the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (nCoV), now named as COVID-19, short for “coronavirus disease 2019”, by the World Health Organization.

The volunteer nurses who will be deployed in the Port per batch will be the ones to administer the Thermo guns to both embarking and disembarking seagoing passengers, and implement the protocols should there be suspected infected passenger/s in order to prevent fear and panic by the general public. The PMO is grateful for this initiative by DOH, as such health-related measures must be undertaken by medical personnel who have enough knowledge of the proper protocols.

The PMO will be preparing the designated areas for the health inspection for disembarking passengers, in coordination with the Port Police Division (PPD) that is tasked to organize the flow of the passengers and maintain the orderliness while the screening is ongoing.

Dr. Mendoza conveyed that DOH will continue to extend assistance to the seaports and airports such as the deployment of their nurses until the outbreak of the deadly COVID-19 is abated. Furthermore, he informed that the virus remains to be communicable from an infected human to another through droplets, as opposed to the belief that it is airborne. He urged everyone to practice cough etiquette or to cover the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.

The DOH is yet to finalize the scheduling of the health personnel who will report for duty in the Port and will commence the operation as soon as possible. — By IMR Lam