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EIGHT newly arrived individuals tested positive for Covid-19 over the weekend, raising the CNMI’s confirmed cases to 143 since March 28, 2020, the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. said.

CHCC spokesman Lee Tenorio said the individuals were identified by travel screening and confirmed diagnosis through testing upon arrival at the Francisco C. Ada/Saipan International Airport. These individuals have been safely in quarantine and were moved to the designated isolation area for close monitoring, Tenorio added.

He said CHCC has already initiated contact tracing for the most immediate contacts of the new confirmed cases, including passengers on the same flight.

As of Feb. 20, 2021, of the CNMI’s total number of Covid-19 cases, 117 were diagnosed through travel testing, 10 were tested through community screening, and 16 through contact tracing 186 days ago. There had been two deaths in March and April 2020.

There are currently 15 persons in isolation, and a total of 135 have been released from isolation based on CHCC and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

On Guam as of Sunday, there had been 7,720 officially reported cases of Covid-19 with 130 deaths, 62 cases in active isolation, and 7,528 not in active isolation.

Tinian vaccination

Last week on Tinian, after most of the government frontline workers received their second dose, CHCC opened its registration for Phases 1A and 1B of the island’s population.

These include all persons 55 years or older, CNMI infrastructure workers in the public and private sectors (food and agriculture, commercial facilities, media and telecommunications, transportation systems, energy and utilities, financial services, waste and water systems, public works and support systems, education staff [Public School System, Northern Marianas College, private schools, and daycares]), Covid-19 contractors employed by the Governor’s Covid-19 Task Force, and CNMI state/local government employees.

The CNMI’s vaccination campaign was submitted to and approved by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and CDC.

A bachelor of arts in journalism graduate, he started his career as a police beat reporter. Loves to cook. Eats death threats for breakfast.

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