Over 500 contacts of 3 coronavirus-infected Chinese now identified
MANILA, Philippines — Nearly 600 individuals who came in contact with the three Chinese who tested positive for the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in the Philippines have been identified, with over 30 under investigation for possible infection, the Department of Health (DOH) said.
In a press briefing, DOH spokesperson Undersecretary Eric Domingo said they have identified all 441 individuals who came in contact with the Chinese couple, who were the first two confirmed cases in the Philippines.
“The epidemiology bureau, together with the PNP-CIDG (Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group) has identified all of the 441 contacts on the first and second case of the nCoV,” he said.
Of this number, 379 were passengers and crew who were in the same flights as the two Chinese nationals, Domingo noted,
The remaining 62, meanwhile, were those who came in contact with the couple in their stay in hotels, resorts, hospitals, public vehicles and other places they visited by the confirmed cases, he added.
The health official said a total of 235 have been contacted, 203 of which were placed on home quarantine.
“Wala silang signs and symptoms, wala silang nararamdaman, walang lagnat at ubo,” he said.
The remaining 32 contacts that exhibited symptoms were categorized as PUIs (patients under investigation), the DOH official said.
Domingo said the DOH has yet to interview the remaining 206 individuals.
“Hindi pa namin na-interview because of erroneous contact information that’s written for example on the flight information but the (epidemiology bureau) is already coordinating with the PNP and local authorities to facilitate contact assessments and interviews,” he added.
Third confirmed case
Domingo said that contact tracing for the third confirmed case, a 60-year-old Chinese woman from Wuhan, has already been initiated.
“Upon the release of the laboratory result of the third confirmed case, (epidemiology bureau) has also initiated contact tracing,” he said.
“Yun yung flight niya from China to Cebu and then yung Cebu niya and then (her) stay in the hospital in Bohol,” he added.
According to Domingo, 106 contacts have been identified and traced.
This includes all 90 co-passengers and 16 individuals from hotels and hospitals who came in contact with the third confirmed case,” he said.
He noted that 22 of these contacts have been interviewed and placed on home quarantine while four symptomatic contacts have been categorized as PUIs.
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