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On Guam, 6 former Covid-19 patients test positive

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HAGÅTÑA (The Guam Daily Post) — Six Covid-19 patients who were previously released from isolation are being isolated again after testing positive for the virus, the Joint Information Center stated on Sunday evening.

Department of Public Health and Social Services Director Linda Unpingco-Denorcey said officials are launching an investigation into the six people. She said it could be a case where the residual RNA of the coronavirus is leading to a positive test result, which is something other countries are also looking into.

It also could be a case, she said, where family members get the virus and reinfect a person. She added that many of the local cases that have tested positive were linked to household contacts.

"This virus is very infectious and...we're learning more about it as we go along," she said, adding her concern that some people might think that because of the recent relatively low number of new positive Covid-19 cases reported daily, that the virus is retreating. "We're not out of the woods yet. I hope people realize that."

No additional cases have been linked to people released from isolation, the information center stated.

As of Sunday, 126 patients have been "released from isolation," which was formerly described in government press releases as "recovered."

"As this is an evolving situation, information is subject to change with little to no notice," the information center stated.

Walk-in applicants were screened at the door of the Agat Gymnasium on Friday prior to being tested for Covid-19. Drive-thru applicants were directed by Guam National Guard members to a series of canopies where motorists were able to be tested without having to get out of their vehicles. Photo by Norman M. Taruc/The Guam Daily Post

Patients are released from isolation when at least 72 hours have passed since they haven't had fever without the use of fever-reducing medications, if they've shown improvement in respiratory symptoms, and at least seven days have passed since symptoms first appeared.

As of Sunday, two new cases increased the total for Guam to 150 since tests started in March. There have been five deaths.

DPHSS tested 81 individuals for Covid-19 on Sunday. Two tested positive through DPHSS and 79 tested negative. The results include samples from clinics, hospitals and the quarantine facility, as well as samples from the Covid-19 expanded testing at the Hemlani Apartments in Harmon. 

On Saturday, a total of 169 samples were tested. Of those, 100 samples came from testing conducted Friday in Agat for southern residents. There was one positive case from that batch of testing, the Joint Information Center announced early Sunday morning.

For Covid-19 testing this week, GovGuam plans to conduct tests in targeted areas such as senior homes and public housing sites.

There was no plan to conduct another mass testing as of Sunday evening.

Guam residents who want to get tested can call 311, pick option 1 for the nurse triage and get tested through community health centers.

People can call their doctors or go to the Northern Region Community Health Center to be evaluated, according to the governor's office.

All public events related to the annual observance of senior citizens month have been canceled.

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