DOH: No need for class suspension due to novel coronavirus
MANILA, Philippines — There’s no need to suspend classes because of the novel coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China, the Department of Health (DOH) said Monday.
“In so far as DOH is concerned, we’re not aware of the reasons why they decided to suspend classes. There really is no need as of now,” DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said in a press briefing in Malacañang.
Duque issued the statement after some private Chinese schools in Metro Manila suspended classes – some indefinitely starting Monday – as a precaution against the novel coronavirus or 2019-nCoV, which originated in China’s Wuhan City.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones, meanwhile, explained that private schools have a “greater degree of autonomy” than public schools when it comes to suspending classes. However, she reminded them to conduct make-up classes so they will not miss out on the number of school days for students.
The health chief said DOH, through the Department of Education, would reach out to these schools to discuss the basis of the class suspensions.
Duque stressed that there is no confirmed case of the novel coronavirus in the Philippines yet. But he confirmed that DOH is currently investigating or observing 11 patients, all foreigners, for possible novel coronavirus.
He also reminded the public to be vigilant against rumors being spread via social media. He announced that DOH would soon be releasing a set of uniformed travel guidelines.
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