First possible coronavirus case in Philippines: Price freeze on face masks imposed

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Department of Health said on Wednesday the price freeze on face masks remain as the Philippines investigates its possible first case of China coronavirus.

“Bawal pong manamantala ‘pag po mayroong sakuna. [May] price freeze po tayo,” Health Undersecretary and Spokesperson Eric Doming told DZMM.

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(Taking advantage of disasters is prohibited. We have a price freeze.)

DOH said the laboratory tests result from a child with new coronavirus strain symptoms in Cebu will be released tomorrow afternoon. The 5-year-old boy from Wuhan, China, arrived in Cebu City on January 13 and tested positive for “nonspecific pancoronavirus.”

Also read: China coronavirus now in Macau, casino staff ordered to wear face masks

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First possible coronavirus case in Philippines: Price freeze on face masks imposed

In a “Radyo Inquirer” interview with Health Sec. Francisco Duque III, he said the samples from the five-year-old child was sent to Melbourne, Australia.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said the new China coronavirus virus could spread and warned hospitals worldwide to be prepared.

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that can cause infections ranging from the common cold to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Some of the virus types cause less severe disease, while some – like the one that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) – are far more severe.

Some vendors took advantage of the high demand for N95 masks due to Taal ashfall, which started on January 12. Prices jumped from 35 pesos to 200.

As a result, President Rodrigo Duterte has no choice to order authorities to raid the warehouse of businesspeople involved in hoarding face masks in the country.

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