Philippines confirms first novel coronavirus case


MANILA – Philippine Health Secretary Francisco Duque confirmed on Thursday that a 38-year-old Chinese female was tested positive for the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), the first novel coronavirus case in the Philippines, reported Xinhua news agency.

Duque told a news conference that the woman arrived in the Philippines from Wuhan, China, via Hong Kong on Jan 21.

The patient was admitted to a government hospital on Jan 25 after experiencing a mild cough, he said.

“She is currently asymptomatic, which means she has no fever and no other signs and symptoms suggesting illness at this point,” Duque added.

He said the Department of Health “continues to guarantee the public that all necessary precautionary measures are being taken to hold the spread of the virus.”

The Chinese woman is among the 23 “persons under investigation” (PUIs) or patients, mostly Chinese nationals, in Metro Manila, central Philippines and northern Mindanao in the southern Philippines.