COVID-19 penetrates Fort Gregorio del Pilar despite stringent protocols

by Warren Ryan Revoltar

Despite a stringent COVID-19 protocol at Fort Gregorio del Pilar, home of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA), the lethal virus has entered the hallowed halls of the PMA.

As per the daily COVID-19 monitoring bulletin released by the Baguio City Health Services Office on December 31, 2020, 14 of the total COVID-19 positive cases tally that day were listed as coming from Fort del Pilar with ages ranging from 19 to 24 years old, with one being 39 years old. All of them are male, and most were part of expanded testing, while the 39-year-old was part of a contact tracing.

On January 1, an additional 24 residents of Fort del Pilar were added to the list of positive COVID-19 cases. Four were males whose ages were ranging from 30 to 59 years old. The rest have ages ranging from 19 to 23 years old. Three are females with ages from 19 to 21.

By Saturday, however, the number of people who tested positive for the virus rose to 37.

Those who tested were listed only as Fort del Pilar dwellers, as per the city health services office. It wasn’t disclosed whether the new patients were cadets, soldiers, teachers, or family members of enlisted PMA personnel staying inside the forested campus during the holidays.

During Rizal Day, PMA superintendent, Maj. Gen. Ferdinand Cartojano said: “The world stopped turning when the disease struck. It changed our daily lives. It changed how we value life because it took lives in an instant. The virus changed how we all struggle for our nation.”

“But there is one aspect that did not change — our resolve and hope that this will end and that tomorrow will be better.” The latest infections at the PMA raised the total number of COVID-19 cases in the city to 3,941, with 301 of them still active,” added Cartojano.

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