The Quezon City government has further beefed up its contact tracing efforts by opening satellite offices and fielding more teams to help detect and stop the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the communities.

The city established satellite contact tracing offices in Districts 3 and 6 to intensify monitoring of suspected, probable, and confirmed cases in barangays. Four more satellite offices will be set up in the remaining districts in the coming days.

Likewise, the local government has formed a total of 90 teams of field and phone contact tracers and also tapped the assistance of 300 barangay contact tracers and 30 personnel from the Philippine National Police (PNP).

The city currently has around 600 contact tracers.

“Our goal is to stop the virus right in its track. We continuously modify and improve our strategies to make sure we slow the virus transmission within the city,” said Mayor Joy Belmonte.

Dr. Rolando Cruz, head of the City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (CESU), said identifying infection routes by going down to the communities is as equally important as finding treatment for COVID-19.

“By rebuilding connections to our communities, we’re able to track the disease and inform our residents of the proper precautions to take,” said Cruz.

He added that the strengthened community surveillance has led to the identification of numerous clustering cases and subsequent lockdowns in various areas.

“The job entails more than just calling patients and asking them questions. They are effective in gauging and telling us the real situation at the barangay level,” said Cruz.

Meanwhile, the city now has a total of 30 service vehicles for contact tracing as 15 more cars were recently turned-over by Suzuki Philippines.