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Sick seaman is first Filipino coronavirus case

08 February 2020

By The SUN

At least 61 people aboard Diamond Princess have tested positive for the Wuhan coronavirus, including the Filipino 

A male crew of the cruise ship Diamond Princess that is quarantined off Yokohama Port in Japan has become the first Filipino to be confirmed as having the deadly novel coronavirus.

The Japanese Ministry of Health said the Filipino was among the first batch of 10 people who were found to have been infected. A second batch of 10 also tested positive for the coronavirus.

By Friday, Feb 7, the authorities said 41 new cases were found, bringing the total number to 61. So far, 273 of the 3,700 people aboard have been tested.
Diamond Princess was quarantined as it docked at Yokohama port  Monday, Feb. 3, after a former passenger, an 80-year-old Chinese man who disembarked in Hong Kong last month, was diagnosed with the virus.

The Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila said the sick seafarer was the only Filipino who tested positive for the virus out of the 538 Filipinos aboard the vessel.

The DFA said the Philippine Embassy in Tokyo has been working with Japanese authorities in providing assistance to the Filipinos on the cruise ship, including providing food, medicine, masks and other supplies..
The sick passengers also included three Hongkongers, three Americans, two Australians, seven Japanese, one Taiwanese, two Canadians and one New Zealander. 

Meanwhile, another cruise ship, World Dream, with 3,600 on board, has also been quarantined at the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal in Hong Kong amid suspicions of a coronavirus infection.

Initial reports said 33 people working on the ship developed symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections. Three who had fever were sent to the hospital for isolation and management.
There has been no reports yet of anyone being found to be sick from the coronavirus which was first found in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

The spread of the epidemic to cruise ships has prompted a manning and management service firm in Manila to require all seafarers disembarking from vessels they manage to undergo a 14- day soft quarantine.
The coronavirus outbreak has killed at least 565 people and infected over 28,000, mostly in China. It has spread to over 25 countries and territories and killed two people outside China.

Earlier on Thursday, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III reported that a Filipina domestic helper in Dubai had died of the coronavirus, but this was immediately disputed by the UAE government, saying she died from a respiratory infection.

The World Health Organization also denied Bello’s report, saying the Filipina died of  pneumonia.


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