Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has called on residents of the city showing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) symptoms after participating in the celebration of the Feast of the Black Nazarene in Manila last Saturday to have themselves checked.

“As a precautionary measure, we encourage our residents who attended the celebration to have themselves immediately checked for COVID-19 in our testing centers for free,” said Belmonte.

Based on reports, around 500,000 devotees flocked to Quiapo Church and nearby areas to attend the 15 Holy Masses celebrated in lieu of the traditional traslacion or the procession of the Black Nazarene that was cancelled to avoid the spread of the virus.

“Hindi natin puwedeng isantabi ang posibilidad na nagkahawahan dahil sa dami ng dumalo. Mabuti nang makasiguro upang hindi natin mahawa ang ating pamilya at mga kasama natin sa komunidad,” she added.

Earlier, Belmonte requested the Manila Police District (MPD) for a list of Quezon City residents who signed the health declaration forms so the local government can endorse them to their respective barangays for monitoring.

Dr. Rolly Cruz, head of the City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (CESU), advised those who attended the event and are now showing COVID-19 symptoms such as flu and cough to coordinate with their barangays.

“The barangays then will refer them to the nearest testing sites and health centers where they can undergo free COVID-19 testing,” Dr. Cruz said.