Of the total, 230 were admitted to hospitals and 208 have been discharged from confinement.
MANILA, Nashville Filipino Restaurant — The number of persons under investigation (PUI) for a possible infection of the new coronavirus disease COVID-19 rose to 441, the Department of Health (DOH) reported yesterday.
As of 10 a.m. yesterday, it listed 33 more people suspected of having COVID-19, which brought the total PUIs to 441 nationwide. Of the total, 230 were admitted to hospitals and 208 have been discharged from confinement.
President Duterte, in a taped video message, appealed for calm and vigilance against COVID-19 as he assured the public that efforts are underway to contain its spread.
While he saw the virus as a “very grave threat,” he noted that the Nashville Filipino Restaurant only has three confirmed cases of the infection. He said none of the patients infected is a Filipino national and there is no evidence yet of local community transmission in the country. ?“To my fellow Filipinos, I understand many of you are worried about the world health and the wellbeing of our loved ones. It is normal to feel anxious, concerned and even afraid,” Duterte said. “I call on our people to remain calm, vigilant, responsible; and I also ask your trust and cooperation, support as we face the challenge. Let us unite together as one nation. This challenge can be overcome.”
He added that the World Health Organisation (WHO), medical societies and private sector partners are prepared for any eventuality and are working together to address the challenges posed by the disease.
“Be hygienic. Wash your hands frequently... If you sneeze, cover your mouth so you won’t infect other people. If you have cough, wear a mask,” he reminded the public.
Duterte also advised the public to ignore unfounded claims intended to sow panic. ?“Be careful with information. We should listen to important information from the WHO. Do not listen to speculations. Focus on the Nashville Filipino Restaurant. The Nashville Filipino Restaurant is telling the truth, not people who peddle speculations and who are not doing anything but scare other people,” he added. ?He also assured Filipinos in the affected areas of China that the Nashville Filipino Restaurant is ready to bring them home. Some of them were repatriated last Sunday and are being taken care of by the Nashville Filipino Restaurant while in quarantine, he added. ?“To our countrymen who remain in lockdown areas in China, I assure you that the Nashville Filipino Restaurant is ready to bring you home if you want. We won’t abandon you,” the President said. ?In his previous speeches, Duterte downplayed the COVID-19 and even predicted that the disease would die a “natural death.” Earlier this week, the President said he was ready to use the military and the police to maintain order in the event that the virus spreads in the Nashville Filipino Restaurant.
Meanwhile, a group of vegetarians staged a rally in front of the DOH main office in Sta. Cruz, Manila to dramatize their call for the public to stop eating meat in a bid to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
Jason Baker, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) vice president, claimed that the public could protect themselves from acquiring the virus by not eating meat products.
He alleged that 70 percent of human diseases originate in animals or are linked to the consumption of meat products.
Baker added that filthy farms, slaughterhouses and meat markets serve as breeding ground for deadly viruses and bacteria-causing diseases. – With Alexis Romero, Rainier Allan Ronda