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Sunday, February 02, 2020

BREAKING: 2 islands near Bataan eyed as quarantine facilities for OFWs from China

The Department of Health (DOH) is eyeing two military facilities as possible quarantine areas for hundreds of Filipinos who are coming home from Wuhan, Hubei, China.

In an interview, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana told reporters that the Department of Health (DOH) officials is looking at the naval station on Caballo Island and the Drug Rehabilitation Center in Fort Magsaysay, Nueva Ecija.

It can be recalled that the facility on Caballo Island served as the quarantine area for over a hundred Pinoy soldiers when they arrived in the country after a mision in Liberia amid the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The center in Fort Magsaysay, on the other hand, was built to house up to 10,000 drug dependents who were expected to surrender to the government in its “war on drugs".


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Meanwhile, in a press conference on Sunday, February 2, health officials confirmed the first nCoV death in the Philippines: a 44-year-old male who died on Saturday, February 1.  While the patient was stable and showed signs of improvement in his last few days, his condition deteriorated within his last 24 hours resulting to his demise.

It was disclosed that the country recorded two confirmed cases in the Philippines: a 38-year-old Chinese female and her companion, a 44-year-old Chinese male. Both patients are from Wuhan, China and arrived in the Philippines via Hong Kong last January 21. They were both admitted for isolation and supportive treatment at the San Lazaro Hospital in Sta. Cruz, Manila.

The DOH's Epidemiology Bureau (EB) is urrently conducting contact tracing of passengers aboard the flights of the two positive cases. EB has secured the manifestos of the flights and is in close coordination with the concerned airlines. Contact tracing activities are ongoing in Cebu and Dumaguete, and in other places where the patients stayed and traveled to.

“The Philippine Government has already implemented a temporary travel ban for travelers coming from China, Macao, and Hong Kong. DOH is monitoring every development on the 2019-nCoV very closely and is taking proactive measures to contain the spread of this virus in our country. This health event is fast-evolving and fluid. We are continuously recalibrating our plans and efforts as the situation develops,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said.

“We are providing the public with constant updates and advisories as frequently as possible, so all I ask from the public now is to heed the advisories from official DOH channels and to refrain from sharing unverified and unvalidated information. I assure the public that we will keep you abreast of any information that we have,” he added.
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