SAIPAN — Twenty-five individuals who traveled off-island recently are under a 14-day mandatory quarantine at Kanoa Resort, said CNMI governor's press secretary Kevin Bautista, adding that these individuals were passengers of United Airlines and Skymark Airlines.

As of press time Tuesday night, it was not known how many of the individuals are local residents or tourists.

One of them, a local resident, said she returned to Saipan after she and other students were told that their college dormitory in the states would be temporarily shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

From there, her flight had stopovers in Hawaii and Guam.

Upon arrival on Saipan on Monday, she said they were immediately escorted to Kanoa Resort, which will be their temporary home for two weeks while in quarantine. She said they will be screened every two days.

She was not able to see her parents, but she was allowed to talk to them on the phone.

As for their accommodations, she said they are comfortable and are being treated well at the hotel.

Mandatory quarantine

Gov. Ralph Torres has ordered a mandatory quarantine for all newly arrived travelers.

Century Hotel in Garapan has been identified as the first isolation area by the governor's COVID-19 task force and the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.

In an earlier interview, CHCC Chief Executive Officer Esther Muna said using hotel facilities for quarantine is not something new.

She said all over the world, especially in the U.S., governments are using hotels to quarantine individuals.

"They don't want hospitals to exceed their capacities. In our case, our hospital has 76 beds only, so we have to be careful. We have to utilize external resources so we will not overwhelm the hospital," Muna said.