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COVID-19 Updates & Precautionary Measures

The Smartest ManThe Smartest Man PEx Rookie ⭐
edited March 11 in Local and Foreign Issues
Hi guys, this is the updates and precautionary measures on COVID-19 in the Philippines. Everybody is welcomed to post the latest updates here ;) May God bless the Philippines! 
Four more cases of COVID-19 as of March 9th. (source: DOH)


  • ArnoldZArnoldZ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    edited January 30

    Wuhan coronavirus cases top 8,000 as countries step up evacuation efforts

    By Helen ReganSteve GeorgeAngela Dewan and Ivana Kottasová, CNN

    Updated 3:09 p.m. ET, January 30, 2020

    What we're covering here

    • The latest: At least 170 people are dead and more than 8,100 cases have been confirmed in mainland China, as the virus spreads globally.
    • Fears spread: Around 7,000 people are being held on a cruise ship in Italy as a couple is tested for the virus, while Russia is shutting its border with China.
    • Global problem: There are more than 100 confirmed cases in 20 places outside of China, with India and the Philippines reporting their first cases.
    • China on lockdown: Nearly 60 million people have been under partial or full lockdown in Chinese cities for a week.
    • Evacuations: The US, Japan, and several other countries are now flying their citizens out of Wuhan. The UK is facing a delay.

    24 min ago

    World Health Organization declares coronavirus a public health emergency of international concern

    From CNN Health’s Michael Nedelman

    The World Health Organization has declared the novel coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency of international concern, after an emergency committee reconvened Thursday in Geneva.

    Last week, the organization said the virus did not yet constitute the emergency declaration. But with rising numbers and evidence of person-to-person transmission in a handful of cases outside of China, WHO leadership called the committee back together due to the “potential for a much larger outbreak,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters earlier this week.

    WHO defines a public health emergency of international concern as “an extraordinary event” that constitutes a “public health risk to other States through the international spread of disease” and “to potentially require a coordinated international response.” Previous emergencies have included Ebola, Zika and H1N1.

    6 min ago

    Cruise ship coronavirus test comes back negative

    From CNN’s Livia Borghese in Civitavecchia, Italy

    Two cruise ship passengers suspected of having coronavirus do not have the virus, the Italian Ministry of Health said Thursday night.

    The 6,000 passenger ship had been forced into quarantine near Rome because of fears the passengers might have the virus.

    The ministry said the patients instead had the H1N2 virus.

    It is not clear when the ship will be allowed to depart.

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    11 min ago

    Number of coronavirus cases in China have exceeded the number of SARS infections worldwide

    From CNN's Samantha Beech & Steven Jiang

    The total number of people infected with the Wuhan coronavirus in mainland China alone has surpassed those infected with SARS worldwide during the 2002-2003 epidemic. 

    SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, infected 8,098 people worldwide with approximately 774 official SARS-related deaths.

    As of Thursday, there have been 8,137 confirmed cases of Wuhan coronavirus in mainland China, including 171 deaths.

    9 min ago

    Cruise companies feel the pain after a ship gets stranded over virus fears

    From CNN Business' Daniela Sirtori-Cortina

    The impact of the new coronavirus outbreak on stock markets is spreading. The latest sector to be hit: cruise companies.

    Shares of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Royal Caribbean Cruises and Carnival Corporation tumbled in morning trading in New York amid revelations that 7,000 people had been held on a cruise ship in Italy after a passenger showed symptoms of a fever.

    Passengers are being held in quarantine on the Costa Smeralda cruise ship over fears a passenger may have coronavirus
    Passengers are being held in quarantine on the Costa Smeralda cruise ship over fears a passenger may have coronavirus.

    40 min ago

    Canada school district warns of racism against Chinese community

    A school district in Ontario, Canada is asking parents to not stoke fear and anxiety over the Coronavirus that could lead to racism and xenophobia. 

    The district wrote the message to their community after becoming aware of a petition -- which thousands of parents signed -- asking the school district to keep students home from school for 17 days if they had family who visited China, according to CNN partner CBC.

    The York Region District School board chair Juanita Nathan and education director Louise Sirisko said: “individuals who make assumptions, even with positive intentions of safety, about the risk of others, request or demand quarantine can be seen as demonstrating bias and racism.” 

    The board told CNN that the statement was “not written in reaction to any one source of misinformation,” but rather because they want to ensure all students feel safe and welcome at school.

    1 hr 23 min ago

    Virus outbreak pushes China's stretched health care workers to breaking point

    From CNN's Julia Hollingsworth, Yuli Yang and Natalie Thomas

    All Shi Muying wanted was to spend one last Lunar New Year holiday with her terminally ill mother. She flew back from the United Kingdom, where she lives and works, to spend the festive season in her hometown, Wuhan, a sprawling metropolis in central China.

    For 24 hours a day, Shi -- who is in her mid-30s -- sat by her mother's bedside in hospital, taking care of her. Around her, more and more people were getting sick from a newly identified coronavirus. But Shi wasn't too worried.

    After all, Chinese authorities were saying that the outbreak was "preventable and controllable."

    Now, three weeks after Shi arrived in China, it's clear the outbreak is not under control. The virus has spread to every Chinese province and region, across Asia and as far away as Europe and the United States. It has infected more than 7,700 people and killed at least 170. Wuhan has been placed on an effective lockdown, almost entirely sealed off from the outside world.

    On Monday, preliminary results showed Shi could also be infected with the virus.

    A suspected patient of coronavirus at a community health station in Wuhan, China.

    But she is more worried for her family -- for her 67-year-old father who also appears to have the virus too, and for her mother who has been uprooted to what she describes as an older, inferior hospital building, to make way for the rush of coronavirus patients.

    Shi, and others like her, have become victims of a public health care crisis. Over the past few days, CNN has spoken to patients, medical staff and experts who have told of delays in testing for the virus, in telling the public the true nature of the virus' spread, and of an already overburdened health system creaking under the enormous weight of a rapidly expanding outbreak.


    Always have an informed decision.

  • ArnoldZArnoldZ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐

    Coronavirus live updates: China says death toll hits 213, confirmed cases rise to 9,692

    Published Thu, Jan 30 20207:05 PM ESTUpdated Moments Ago

    This is a live blog. Please check back for updates.

    All times below in Beijing time.

    10:00am: US raises travel warning advisory for China to level 4

    The U.S. Department of State raised its travel advisory for China from Level 3 to Level 4, which means “do not travel to China.” That came just days after it changed its alert level to 3 on Monday, which means “reconsider travel to China due to the novel coronavirus.”

    9:40am: Rising number of airlines suspending China flights

    These are the airlines which have suspended all flights to China amid the outbreak: Air France (Until Feb. 9), British Airways (until end February), Air Seoul, Egyptair, Lion Air, Lufthansa (till end February), Swiss Airlines (till end February) and Austrian Airlines (till end February).

    Airlines which suspended some flights, or reduced capacity:

    - Singapore Airlines: reduced capacity on flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Xiamen and Chongqing.

    - American Airlines: flights from Los Angeles to Bejing and Shanghai from Feb. 9 to March 27.

    - Delta Airlines: reducing flights to 21 a week from 42, from Feb. 1 to April 30.

    - Cathay Pacific: progressively reduce capacity to and from mainland China by 50% or more, from Jan. 30 till end March.

    - Finnair: suspending flights to Nanjing and Beijing until end March.

    - Turkish Airlines: reducing frequency of flights to Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Xian from Feb. 5 to Feb. 29.

    8 am: China says death toll hits 213, cases rise to 9,692

    China’s National Health Commission said there have been an additional 43 deaths and 1,982 new confirmed cases, as of the end of Thursday. That brings the country’s total to 213 deaths and 9,692 confirmed cases, the government said. 

  • ArnoldZArnoldZ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐

    Philippines reports 1st virus death outside of China

    Associated PressFebruary 1, 2020, 4:27 PM PST

    BEIJING (AP) — The Philippines has reported the first death related to a new virus outside of China.

    The Department of Health says a 44-year-old Chinese man from Wuhan was admitted on Jan. 25 after experiencing fever, cough, and sore throat.

    He developed severe pneumonia, and in his last few days, “the patient was stable and showed signs of improvement, however, the condition of the patient deteriorated within his last 24 hours resulting in his demise," the health department said.

    The man's 38-year-old female companion, also from Wuhan, tested positive for the virus and remains in hospital isolation in Manila. She's the second case in the Philippines.

    THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP's earlier story follows below:

    China’s death toll from a new virus increased to 304 on Sunday amid warnings from the World Health Organization that other countries need to prepare in the event the disease spreads among their populations as more nations report local infections.

    Meanwhile, six officials in the city of Huanggang, neighboring the epicenter of Wuhan in Hubei province, have been fired over “poor performance" in handling the outbreak, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

    It cited the mayor as saying the city's “capabilities to treat the patients remained inadequate and there is a severe shortage in medical supplies such as protective suits and medical masks."

    Figures from the National Health Commission showed an increase of 45 in the death toll and 2,590 in the number bof cases for a total of 14,380, well above the number of those infected in in the 2002-03 outbreak of SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, which broke out in southern China before spreading worldwide.

    With the outbreak showing little sign of abating, authorities in Hubei and elsewhere have extended the Lunar New Year holiday, due to end this week, well into February. The annual travel crunch of millions of people returning from their hometowns to the cities is thought to pose a major threat of secondary infection at a time when authorities are encouraging people to avoid public gatherings.

    All Hubei schools will postpone the opening of the new semester until further notice and students from elsewhere who visited over the holiday will also be excused from classes.

    Far away on China's southeast coast, the manufacturing hub of Wenzhou put off the opening of government offices until Feb. 9, private businesses until Feb. 17 and schools until March 1.

    With nearly 10 million people, Wenzhou has reported 241 confirmed cases of the virus, accounting for one of the highest levels outside Hubei. Similar measures have been announced in the provinces and cities of Heilongjiang, Shandong, Guizhou, Hebei and Hunan, while the major cities of Shanghai and Beijing were on indefinite leave pending developments.

    Despite imposing drastic travel restrictions at home, China has chafed at those imposed by foreign governments, criticizing Washington’s order barring entry to most non-citizens who visited China in the past two weeks. Apart from dinging China's international reputation, such steps could worsen a domestic economic already growing at its lowest rate in decades.

    The crisis is just the latest to confront Chinese leader Xi Jinping, who has been beset by months of anti-government protests in the semi-autonomous Chinese city of Hong Kong, the reelection of Taiwan's pro-independence president and criticism over human rights violations in the traditionally Muslim northwestern territory of Xinjiang. Economically, Xi faces lagging demand and dramatically slower growth at home while the tariff war with the U.S. remains largely unresolved.

    Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced similar travel measures Saturday, following Japan and Singapore.

    South Korea and India flew hundreds of their citizens out of Wuhan, the city at the center of an area where some 50 million people are prevented from leaving in a sweeping anti-virus effort. The evacuees went into a two-week quarantine. Indonesia also sent a plane.

    On Sunday, South Korea reported three more cases for a total of 15. They include an evacuee, a Chinese relative of a man who tested positive and a man who returned from Wuhan.

    The virus’ rapid spread in two months prompted the World Health Organization on Thursday to declare it a global emergency.

    That declaration “flipped the switch” from a cautious attitude to recommending governments prepare for the possibility the virus might spread, said the WHO representative in Beijing, Gauden Galea. Most cases reported so far have been people who visited China or their family members.

    The agency acted out of concern for poorer countries that might not be equipped to respond, said Galea. Such a declaration calls for a coordinated international response and can bring more money and resources.

    WHO said it was especially concerned that some cases abroad involved human-to-human transmission.

    “Countries need to get ready for possible importation in order to identify cases as early as possible and in order to be ready for a domestic outbreak control, if that happens,” Galea told The Associated Press.

    Australia, Germany, Japan, South Korea, the United Arab Emirates, the United States and Vietnam all reported new cases Saturday. Spain confirmed its first case — a German man who had close contact with an infected person in Germany and then traveled to the Canary Islands with friends. Four friends who were hospitalized with him have not shown symptoms.

    Both the new virus and SARS are from the coronavirus family, which also includes those that cause the common cold.

    The death rate in China is falling, but the number of confirmed cases will keep growing because thousands of specimens from suspected cases have yet to be tested, Galea said.

    “The case fatality ratio is settling out at a much lower level than we were reporting three, now four, weeks ago,” he said.

    Although scientists expect to see limited transmission of the virus between people with family or other close contact, they are concerned about cases of infection spreading to people who might have less exposure.


    And so it begins......

  • ArnoldZArnoldZ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    edited February 18

    Philippines 'ill-prepared' as it grapples with coronavirus threat

    Overworked healthcare staff fear exposure to virus as government faces criticism over $197m cuts in budget for health.

    by Ana P Santos
    15 hours ago
    Staff at a hospital in Manila prepare the equipment of an isolation tent installed for patients who will manifest symptoms that could be investigated for coronavirus Rolex dela PenaEPA
    Staff at a hospital in Manila prepare the equipment of an isolation tent installed for patients who will manifest symptoms that could be investigated for coronavirus [Rolex dela Pena/EPA]

    Manila, Philippines - The coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has now killed more than 1,800 people and infected more than 72,000 others since it was first detected in China's city of Wuhan in December.

    In the Philippines, where the first death outside of China was reported, the government has faced intense criticism over its handling of the outbreak, and its decision to allow direct flights from China despite the lockdown in Hubei province, the epicentre of the epidemic.A jittery public erupted in anger after it was revealed that the 44-year-old Wuhan resident, who later died, and a female companion, visited three cities in the Philippines before they were both tested positive of the virus in the capital, Manila.

    In a Senate hearing following the first confirmed death linked to the virus, legislators questioned Health Secretary Francisco Duque III over the government's system of identifying and tracking down people, who may have come in contact with the infected couple - a process known as contact tracing.

    "I think it's not just a failure of communication. I think it's also a failure of leadership on the part of the health department," said opposition Senator Francis Pangilinan.

    As of Monday, February 17, there were three confirmed coronavirus cases in the country, including one death and one patient, who had returned to China before her infection was confirmed. At least 171 patients remain hospitalised and are under investigation, while 350 others were discharged.

    At San Lazaro Hospital, where the infected couple from Wuhan was admitted, medical staff told Al Jazeera that the lack of transparency from health authorities, understaffing, and shortage of protective medical equipment expose the dire state of the country's public health system that is "ill-prepared" to manage the outbreak.

    "When the health department said we are prepared for this (COVID19), I don't know if they are saying that because they want to prevent public panic or they want to lie," one staff nurse, who asked not to be identified, told Al Jazeera.

    Panic at hospital

    Another nurse recalled to Al Jazeera how the medical staff at San Lanzaro grew anxious after the Chinese man's condition turned for the worse and he had to be intubated - a medical procedure employed when a patient can no longer breathe on his own without assistance.

    Then panic and chaos ensued at the Manila-based public hospital when the patient died of the infection.

    The healthcare workers, who had been treating the two infected patients from Wuhan, had to be quarantined themselves, forcing other medical staff to work overtime.

    San Lazaro Philippines
    San Lazaro Hospital in Manila specialises in treating infectious diseases in the Philippines [Mark R Cristino/EPA]

    Some of the health workers simply broke down in tears due to exhaustion and anxiety over the spread of the virus, they told Al Jazeera.

    Another nurse at the same hospital said there are standard protocols for the handling of new and emerging diseases. But quick turnaround of health workers, who seek higher-paying jobs in other hospitals or outside the country, makes it difficult to implement the policy.

    "Health authorities also need to take the emotional and psychological preparedness of health workers into consideration," said the staff nurse.

    'Surgical masks as thin as tissue paper'

    At another public hospital in Manila, two nurses in the general admission ward are assigned to take care of about 100 patients during their shift. The hospital is also preparing one of its wards to be a quarantine area.

    Their supervisor showed to Al Jazeera a mask that they use as protective gear from the virus.

    "It's as thin as tissue paper. It can probably only mask bad breath," she scoffed. "But we don't have a choice, this is all we have. We wear two masks at a time."

    Coronavirus - Philippines
    Despite criticisms, the Philippine government has assured the public that is is prepared to deal with the coronavirus outbreak [Aaron Favila/AP]

    "The DOH is prepared. But what we are seeing is the virus is infecting people faster. Despite the challenges, the overstretched workforce of health workers and limited resources, we have contained the infections and prevented any cases of local transmissions," said Alethea De Guzman of the Department of Health's Epidemiology Bureau.

    According to estimates the doctor-to-patient ratio in the Philippines is one doctor per 33,000 patients, and one hospital bed is available to every 1,121 Filipino patients.

    "We understand the anxiety that our health workers are feeling. But we also have to consider that there is a shortage of personal protective equipment worldwide because of the global epidemic outbreak," de Guzman said, adding that the government is trying to secure more supplies and protective equipment despite a global shortage.

    Earlier this month, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte announced that 2.25 billion Philippine pesos ($44.5m) would be allocated to buy protective gear, which will include goggles, N95 masks, gloves, headgear for front line health workers.

    A health worker in a public hospital in Manila shows the mask they use. “It’s as thin as tissue paper...just enough to mask bad breathe.”

    Public health workers say the COVID-19 virus is weighing heavily on the battered public health system. My report on @AJEnglish coming up.

    View image on Twitter

    Budget cut for healthcare

    But the additional budget allocation came on the heels of the health department's 2020 budget being cut by 10 billion Philippine pesos ($197m).

    Several legislators criticised the move saying that the country is already struggling to cope with the recent successive outbreaks of dengue and measles and the resurgence of polio.

    In a statement, opposition lawmaker Senator Risa Hontiveros called the budget cut "illogical, counterproductive and even criminal."

    Jocelyn Santos-Andamo, the secretary-general of Filipino Nurses United (FNU), a national union of nurses, said in general, the government does not treat health as a priority.

    "The already low health budget was further cut resulting in less medical supplies, poorly maintained medical equipment and understaffing. Even before COVID-19, the public health systems was already deteriorating," she said.

    FNU and the Alliance of Health Workers, a union of government and private health workers, have been holding protests demanding for adequate protective gear for nurses and an increase in their minimum monthly salary currently pegged at 16,000 Philippine pesos ($320).

    The World Health Organization (WHO) said that the Philippines has improved its healthcare capacity over the years

    "We can see that by how they have successfully contained three individual cases of COVID-19 and prevented it from infecting others," said Dr Rabi Abeyasinghe, WHO Representative for the Philippines.

    "Looking at the global trend, we need to prepare for a possible large scale community outbreak" where the virus is transmitted from person to person," Abeyasinghe added.

    But the staff nurse at the infectious diseases hospital shrugged her shoulders and sighed at the news.

    "I don't know anymore. Times like this the only thing you can do is pray - and I'm not even a religious person.


    Basketball and other sports junket trips, that's what Philippines' politicians are prepared for!

  • joerizjoeriz PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    Pity the Philippines and the Filipinos if COVID-19 gets a foothold in the country. Remember, that so far, most if not all infected by the virus are Chinese citizens of of Chinese descent. Looks like they are most susceptible to the virus. What is the number of people in the Philippines that are Chinese or of Chinese descent? If they get infected by the virus, the number could be enough for other countries to ban trave to and from the Philippines. Consider the cosequenced of a lock down. It wouldn't be pleasant.
  • Pinaka-best way parin talaga ang magsuot ng mask everyday lalo na kapag palaging lumalabas sa bahay at para masiguradong safe tayo sa Ncov o anumang virus na yan. Grabe din yang virus na yan, napakabilis kumalat at pwedeng mamatay ang magkaroon neto. Kaya guys doble ingat po tayo at mas maganda kung di na tayo lalabas ng bahay kung di naman kinakailangan para hindi makasinghot ng kung ano-anong virus. Be safe everyone!

  • ArnoldZArnoldZ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    edited February 22

    Another suspected coronavirus carrier recorded in Quezon

    Inquirer Southern Luzon / 07:58 AM February 22, 2020

    virus coronavirus

    Airport personnel look at thermal scanners as they check on arriving passengers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. (AP File Photo)

    LUCENA CITY, Philippines – The Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) in Quezon recorded another suspected carrier of corona virus disease (COVID-19) classified as patient under investigation (PUI) status in the province.

    In a public advisory at 5 p.m. Friday, IPHO said the new PUI is confined in an undisclosed hospital and is being attended to by the Department of Health (DOH) and IPHO medical staff while awaiting the result of the specimen tests from the national reference laboratory.

    The PUIs are those who traveled to mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau in the past 14 days since the COVID-19 broke out, who have consulted doctors due to coughs, cold, or fever.

    The six PUIs recorded earlier have tested negative for the virus and have been discharged from hospitals.

     Feb. 21 – 5 p.m. Quezon province remains negative for COVID-19 cases.”

    The local health authorities also recorded a total of 48 possible virus carriers classified as person under monitoring (PUM) status in the province. At least 25 have completed the mandatory 14-day home quarantine period.

    They remained healthy and without any respiratory symptoms, the IPHO said.

    The remaining 23 were still under home quarantine and close observation.

    The PUMs are those who recently traveled to China, Macau, or Hong Kong “but showed no respiratory symptoms and were advised to go into home quarantine” immediately after their arrival.

    The IPHO maintained that the high number of PUMs should not cause public alarm. It explained that the figures were the result of strengthened surveillance and monitoring by the community health workers


    And now outlying provinces from Manila are getting suspected infections.  Containment is not guaranteed by any strengthened surveillance. Soon it will lead to banning of any public meetings. Businesses, schools and churches might be ordered to limit activities if not complete closure.
  • _knorr__knorr_ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐

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  • _knorr__knorr_ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    edited March 1

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  • hellraiser2.hellraiser2. PEx Veteran ⭐⭐

    US pledges $37 million in aid to PH, high risk countries vs COVID-19

    MANILA, Philippines — The U.S. government has pledged $37 million worth of financial aid to help “high-priority” countries, including the Philippines, in their fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

    According to the U.S. Agency of International Development (USAID), the funding was sourced from its Emergency Reserve Fund for Contagious Infectious Diseases and will benefit 25 countries affected by the virus or at high risk of its spread.


    The funds will be used to prepare laboratories for large-scale testing for COVID-19, train and equip rapid-response teams, investigate infection of cases and trace contacts of infected persons and more.

    “These are the first U.S. government funds committed from the pledge of up to $100 million announced by the U.S. Department of State on February 7, 2020,” USAID said in a statement Monday.

    “Because an infectious-disease threat anywhere can be a threat everywhere, we call on other donors to contribute to the effort to combat COVID-19 as well,” it added.

    Apart from the Philippines, other countries that will benefit from the aid are Afghanistan, Angola, Indonesia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kenya, South Africa, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Kyrgyz Republic, Laos, Mongolia, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Thailand, and Vietnam.

    USAID said it will also distribute personal protective equipment (PPE) such as goggles, gowns, face shields or masks, and gloves that were charitable donations from U.S. private-sector entities.

    Globally, the number of COVID-19 cases has surpassed 95,000 with over 3,000 deaths, mostly from China.

    Meanwhile, there have only been three confirmed cases in the Philippines. As of March 4, there are 39 admitted persons under monitoring for being infected by COVID-19.

  • hellraiser2.hellraiser2. PEx Veteran ⭐⭐

    Philippines records 2 new COVID-19 cases

    The Philippines has recorded two more cases of novel coronavirus 2019 disease (COVID-19), bringing the total number to five, the Department of Health (DOH) announced Friday.

    At a press briefing, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said that one of the two new cases was a 48-year-old Filipino male with a travel history from Japan.

    "The patient returned to the Philippines last February 25 and experienced chills and fever beginning March 3. The patient sought medical consultation at a hospital and samples were collected for testing," Duque said.

    He was confirmed to have COVID-19 on March 5.

    The fifth case was a 62-year-old Filipino male in San Juan City with no travel history abroad but has frequently visited a Muslim prayer hall and has hypertension and diabetes.

    "The patient sought medical consultation at a hospital in Metro Manila last March 1 and was admitted with severe pneumonia. Specimen collected on March 4 tested positive for COVID-19 on March 5," Duque said.

    In Malacañang, presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo maintained that the government is prepared to respond to such development.

    "There is no need for alarm or worry because we are ready. From the very start we already said that," presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo told reporters.

    Panelo said protocols are already in place, adding President Rodrigo Duterte would definitely grant the request of the Department of Health (DOH) for a P2-billion supplemental budget intended for coronavirus response.

    Previous cases

    Prior to the announcement of the two new cases, there have been three confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Philippines, all tourists from China who arrived in January.

    Two of them have recovered and one died.

    Both the fourth and fifth cases are currently admitted at the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine in Muntinlupa.

    The 48-year-old patient, a lawyer, is in stable condition but the 62-year-old is suffering from severe pneumonia.

    The DOH, in coordination with the Philippine National Police and airline companies, launched contact tracing efforts for those whom they have possibly interacted with to prevent local transmission of the virus.

    'Premature to declare local transmission'

    Despite the development, Duque said that it is still premature to say that there is already local transmission in the Philippines.

    "The absence of travel is a clear indication that this is a local case,"  Duque said, referring to the fifth case.

    "There is no transmission to speak of as of yet because we only have one. That's why we're doing contact tracing," he added.

    According to Duque, local transmission can only be declared if there is more than one positive case who did not travel abroad.

    World Health Organization country representative Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe also stressed that local transmission is different from community transmission.

    "Local transmission [means] transmission in a local geographical setting. Community transmission means widespread transmission beyond the defined geographical area," he said.

    The infective rate of COVID-19 is 1:3.5, meaning an infected person can transmit the virus to up to three people, according to Abeyasinghe

  • TrollmasterTrollmaster PEx Rookie ⭐
    Ghost Town na daw ang San Juan
  • hellraiser2.hellraiser2. PEx Veteran ⭐⭐

    WHO official: Philippines fifth COVID-19 patient a case of local transmission

    The Philippines' fifth confirmed COVID-19 patient is already a case of local transmission, an official of the World Health Organization has said.

    Dr Rabindra Abeyasinghe, the acting WHO representative in the Philippines, said the 62-year-old male who has a relative who's also exhibiting symptoms related to COViD-19 was already a case of local transmission.

    Asked if there would already be a case of local transmission if the fifth case's relative tested positive for COVID-19, Abeyasinghe said, "Even the fifth case is a local transmission."

    Abeyasinghe, however, said that getting another case in a very close contact did not mean widespread transmission.

    "We know that disease is transmitted upon close contacts," Abeyasinghe told reporters after Health Secretary Francisco Duque's press conference on COVID-19 updates at the Department of Health.

    Abeyasinghe said it was still unclear whether the fifth case got the virus from a foreigner or a resident of the Phlippines.

    "It maybe that you’re seeing a local transmission but we need to be clear that it points to the fact that the patient has acquired the disease in the Philippines," Abeyasinghe said.

    "We don't know... whether it was from a foreigner or its from a local contact or other contaminated source. We also don't know whether that patient transmitted the infection to other people," he added.

    "At this point in time we are not sure whether we are looking at an isolated case or we are looking at a cluster of cases but a cluster of cases does not mean you have a wide spread of local transmission," Abeyasinghe said.

    ‘We only have one’

    Duque on Friday announced that the Philippines has recorded two more cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number to five.

    He said that one of the two new cases was a 48-year-old Filipino male with a travel history from Japan.

    The other was a 62-year-old Filipino male in San Juan City with no travel history abroad but has frequently visited a Muslim prayer hall and has hypertension and diabetes.

    Despite the development, Duque said that it is still premature to say that there is already local transmission in the Philippines.

    "The absence of travel is a clear indication that this is a local case,"  Duque said, referring to the fifth case.

    "There is no transmission to speak of as of yet because we only have one. That's why we're doing contact tracing," he added.

    According to Duque, local transmission can only be declared if there is more than one positive case who did not travel abroad.

    Specimen collected, awaiting results

    The relative of the fifth confirmed case is now being monitored at a referral hospital of the DOH.

    Health officials are waiting for the result of the relative's COVID-19 test.

    "Based on contact tracing and based from the initial investigations we've done last night and early this morning, we already have one relative, who has been with the patient all throughout, has already experienced symptoms and is now with him in our referral hospital," Health Assistant Secretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said.

    "The specimen was collected and we are just awaiting results," she added.


  • hellraiser2.hellraiser2. PEx Veteran ⭐⭐

    Deloitte Philippines employee tests positive for COVID-19

    MANILA, Philippines — Multinational finance and consultancy firm Deloitte Philippines on Saturday confirmed that one of its employees tested positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

    “We can confirm that a colleague in our Deloitte Philippines office has tested positive for COVID-19), the firm, based in the Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, said in a statement.

    “The colleague is currently in hospital receiving treatment and further tests, and Deloitte is supporting the colleague and family and every way we can,” the company added.

    The company, however, did not disclose further details of the employee, as well as whether the employee is a new case of COVID-19, or is one of the five cases confirmed by the Department of Health (DOH).

    On Friday, the DOH reported that there are two new confirmed cases of the deadly virus in the Philippines. 

    The firm also assured that “health and safety of their people, clients and community is of “highest priority,” adding “our immediate response has been to take all necessary actions to manage the situation.”

    “Deloitte Philippines continues to comply with the instructions and directions from the Department of Health,” the firm said. “All necessary actions were promptly taken to inform those who might have come into contact with the colleague for the appropriate checks and provide any possible form of support.”

    “We continue to monitor and manage the COVID-19 situation in order to respond as necessary,” the finance and consultancy firm added.

  • hellraiser2.hellraiser2. PEx Veteran ⭐⭐

    Philippines confirms 4 new COVID-19 cases, bringing total to 10

    The Philippines has confirmed four new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on Sunday, bringing the total in the country to 10.

    According to the Department of Health in a statement, samples from all the new confirmed cases were tested on March 7, and results were released on Sunday, March 8.

    The DOH also provided descriptions of the four new cases:

    The 7th case (PH7) is a 38-year-old Taiwanese male. The patient has a history of contact with a Taiwanese foreign national who visited the Philippines and tested positive for COVID-19 in Taiwan. The patient has no history of travel outside of the country and his symptoms started last March 3. He is currently admitted to a private hospital.

    The 8th case (PH8) is a 32-year-old Filipino male with history of travel to Japan within the past 14 days. Onset of symptoms began on March 5 and the patient is currently admitted to a private hospital.

    The 9th case (PH9) is an 86-year-old American male with pre-existing hypertension and history of travel to USA and South Korea. Symptoms began on 1 March 2020 and the patient is currently admitted to a private hospital.

    The 10th case (PH10) is a 57-year-old Filipino male with no history of travel outside of the country. He was reported to have had contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case, however, DOH is currently investigating details of his exposure. The patient is currently admitted to a private hospital.

    The statement did not provide details on the new cases' areas of residence or locations visited.

    However, DOH said it is "in coordination with concerned Local Government Units and the Centers for Health Development for localized response and implementation of infection prevention and control measures."

    In the statement, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said that the department has been preparing for cases of localized transmission of the disease. 

    "Now that there are confirmed cases of localized transmission, DOH and the Inter-agency Task Force are now implementing pre-planned measures to respond to the situation. Upon confirmation of new cases, we immediately deployed additional surveillance teams and commenced contact tracing," he said.

    The DOH is also urging people with fever and/or respiratory symptoms with history of travel and exposure to call the department's hotline at (02) 8-651-7800 local 1149-1150.

    "I call on the public to continue to be vigilant and practice personal preventive measures such as proper hand hygiene, social distancing, and cough etiquette. In the meantime, let us refrain from visiting public places and/or attending mass gatherings," Duque said.

    "I am calling for your cooperation in this trying time. Only through concerted effort at the community level will we be able to succeed against the threat of the disease," he added.

    Classes for Monday have been suspended in several places as a precaution against the virus.

    The new coronavirus was first detected in Wuhan, China late last year, with the epicenter suspected to have been a seafood market in the city.

    There are currently more than 106,000 confirmed cases around the world, with over 3,600 dead.

    Most of the infections and deaths are in China, which has reported 3,097 fatalities so far.

    First five cases

    In the Philippines, the first three COVID-19 cases, all Chinese, were reported in late January and early February, with one of the patients dying—the first death from the disease outside China. 

    After weeks with no new cases, the Philippines confirmed two more cases last Friday, both Filipino males, bringing the total to five.

    The fourth case is an employee of financial services firm Deloitte in Bonifacio Global City, while the fifth case is a Cainta resident who frequented a Muslin prayer hall in Greenhills.

    On Saturday, the sixth case—the wife of the fifth patient—was confirmed. Their children have been placed under quarantine.

    OFW cases

    Outside the Philippines, four Filipinos in Hong Kong and three in Singapore tested positive for the virus.

    In Japan, at least 80 Filipinos from the Diamond Princess cruise ship were confirmed to have COVID-19 and were taken to hospitals. Hundreds of other Filipinos on the ship, mostly crew, were repatriated to the Philippines for a two-week quarantine in the Athletes' Village in New Clark City in Tarlac.

    In the US, meanwhile, another Princess Cruises ship, the Grand Princess, has been held off the coast of California after passengers and crew members developed symptoms.

    The DOH later confirmed that more than 500 Filipinos—making up about half of the ship's crew—are on the ship, which has been given permission to dock in Oakland.

  • _knorr__knorr_ PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐

    Attention everyone!!!! Corona virus pneumonia is a dry cough without runny nose, this is the simplest way to identify it. The virus is not heat-resistant and will be killed in an environment of 26-27 degrees. Therefore, drink plenty of hot water to prevent the virus. As long as the body maintains heat, eat more ginger and do more Exercise, you will not be infected with the virus. Eating more ginger, garlic pepper, and pepper can solve it; eat less sweet, sour, and salty, and don't go to cold weather areas. The virus will disappear completely when exposed to the sun.
    Everyone can share it and help one by one.

  • What precautionary measures? God I'm so scared now :s
  • The Smartest ManThe Smartest Man PEx Rookie ⭐
    Some of the precautionary measures advised by DOH.

  • The Smartest ManThe Smartest Man PEx Rookie ⭐
    What precautionary measures? God I'm so scared now :s
    Some of the advice by DOH. May it be of help :)
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