DOH: 5 Covid-19 deaths


Three more Filipinos with coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) have died, bringing the death toll in the Philippines to five, the Department of Health (DOH) reported Thursday night.

In an announcement, DOH identified the three as Patients No. 5, No. 6, and No. 37.

Patient No. 6, the wife of Patient No. 5, was initially admitted at Cardinal Santos Medical Center and transferred to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.

The DOH said she “suddenly experienced difficulty in breathing and was intubated late evening of March 11”.

On the same night, the patient died from acute respiratory distress syndrome due to severe pneumonia secondary to Covid-19.

DOH said a repeat chest x-ray showed progressive pneumonia. Patient No. 6 is a known diabetic.

Meanwhile, Patient No. 5, her husband, expired late evening of March 11 also from acute respiratory distress syndrome due to severe pneumonia secondary to the disease. He is a known diabetic and hypertensive who developed an acute kidney injury.

The third and latest death caused by the disease was Patient No. 37, an 88-year-old female and resident of Pasig City.

She was admitted on March 6 at the Philippine Heart Center after experiencing onset of symptoms on February 28.

“The patient expired this afternoon with Acute Respiratory Failure as the cause of death,” the DOH said. She was reported to have existing hypertension.

This developed following the death of Patient No. 35, the 67-year-old wife of Patient No. 34. The country’s first fatality was a Chinese national who was also the first recorded Covid-19 death outside China.

As of Thursday, the DOH reported a total of 52 confirmed Covid-19 cases in the Philippines. (PNA)

Covid-19 cases in Philippines now at 52


THE Department of Health (DOH) announced Thursday, March 12, three more confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in the country, bringing the total to 52.

coid cases

The three new cases involved a 69-year-old Filipino who has been confined at The Medical City; a 26-year-old Filipino who was admitted to the Makati Medical Center; and a 79-year-old Filipino who was brought to the Asian Hospital and Medical Center.

The DOH list of confirmed cases show that the 79-year-old Filipino (Patient 52) has a history of travel to the United Kingdom.

On Wednesday, March 11, the DOH also announced 16 additional cases of Covid-19 in the country.

Contact tracing for all cases are ongoing, said the DOH.


This is a developing story.

World Health Organization formally declares coronavirus a pandemic

The World Health Organization on Wednesday formally declared the coronavirus a worldwide pandemic, underscoring the pathogen’s inexorable spread across the globe as new cases and deaths rise, in a sobering admission that regional efforts to contain the outbreak have been lost.


Initially, the WHO resisted characterizing the disease as a pandemic. Yet as COVID-19’s casualty count has mounted, the organization relented. Worldwide infections have surged well above 100,000 and the death toll has spiked above 4,000.
“We have therefore made the assessment that #COVID19 can be characterized as a pandemic,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the World Health Organization’s director general. He added that 90% of the total cases globally are from four countries. That includes China, South Korea and Italy— which just this week was forced to quarantine the entire nation.
“In the days and weeks ahead, we expect to see the number of Covid-19 cases, the number of deaths, and the number of affected countries climb even higher,” the organization said.
The U.S. is experiencing a spike in new cases, as Italy quarantines its country to control the world's second-biggest cluster of infections.The U.S. is experiencing a spike in new cases, as Italy quarantines its country to control the world’s second-biggest cluster of infections.
The WHO’s declaration comes as efforts to contain and mitigate the coronavirus’ spread enter a new and more perilous phase. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told Congress on Wednesday that the worst was yet to come for the U.S.
In hotspots like New York — which currently is the largest epicenter of new infections — businesses have been allowing employees to work from home as new cases spike.
And around the nation, places like Harvard, Stanford and other universities have moved to online classes — effectively shuttering their campuses to students as more cities implement “social distancing” policies that keep most citizens from assembling in large groups. A range of major events, such as Coachella and South by Southwest, have either been postponed or canceled.
In the U.S., President Donald Trump has mobilized a task force to tackle the crisis, and last week signed a stimulus bill worth over $8 billion as the disease emerges as a serious challenge to his presidency.
The administration is also planning several supplemental stimulus measures to put more money in the hands of consumers, and backstop businesses hammered by travel restrictions, quarantines and border closures.
WHO’s Michael Ryan and Maria Van Kerkhove said basic public health techniques would be most effective, as seen in Singapore, South Korea and China.
Ryan said social distancing measures, like “locking down whole areas, canceling all sporting events, canceling religions events and closing schools” were more costly to a country than contact tracing — which focuses on the immediate circle of contact for an infected individual.
Ghebreyesus said there are still many countries without cases, and the declaration does not change how countries should respond to the outbreak. However, the rising number of infections pose a grave threat to governments and health care systems everywhere — as has been the case in Italy, where emergency rooms have reportedly been swamped with sick patients.
“All countries can still change the course of this pandemi,” he said. “If countries detect, test, treat, isolate, trace and mobilize their people in the response. We are deeply concerned by the alarming levels of spread and severity and by the alarming levels of inaction.”
Worldwide, the number of recoveries equals half of the current total infected, at more than 66,000, highlighting what the WHO says is the narrow window to rein in the disease.
The WHO began tracking the virus on January 21, which became a series of epidemics in various countries as China’s infections accelerated at a rapid pace. The disease is threatening to overtake Europe and the United States, even as infections in Asia fall from their worst peaks.
With the economic and business toll mounting, global markets have been engulfed in waves of panic selling, with major benchmarks sinking to new session lows in volatile trading following the declaration.
The outbreak was first reported in Wuhan, in Hubei province in China at the end of December. Within weeks, Chinese experts released the genetic sequence of the virus, allowing scientists around the world a chance to understand the virus, and drug companies a chance to develop treatments and vaccines.
In the world’s largest economy, the outbreak has surged past 1,000 cases within a week, largely due to testing capabilities that are more widely available. But health officials expect even more cases to appear as testing ramps up