Coronavirus kills Chinese man in Philippines, first death outside China

Andrew Cummings
February 2, 2020

The Philippines health watchdog said early on Sunday that a 44-year-old man, a Wuhan resident, died on 1 February after contracting the new Wuhan coronavirus pneumonia-type infection, also known as 2019-nCoV.

The man's 38-year-old female companion, also from Wuhan, tested positive for the virus and remains in hospital isolation in Manila.

The new strain of coronavirus was reportedly first detected in the Chinese city of Wuhan, located in the Hubei province, in December 2019 and has since spread to more than 20 countries.

He appeared to have been infected before arriving in the Philippines, the World Health Organization said. The death toll went up to 304 as of yesterday midnight.

Coronavirus: 3 More Japan Citizens Tested Positive For Coronavirus Evacuated From Wuhan Japan confirmed an additional three cases of the new coronavirus among evacuees from the Chinese city of Wuhan, including one who initially tested negative, the health ministry said on Saturday, bringing the country's total to 20 cases.

The health department's announcement follows a move by the Philippine government to widen its travel ban amid the outbreak to include all foreigners coming from China.

It now applied to all of mainland China, excluding Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. The government, which earlier denied entry only to arrivals from Hubei province, will still allow entry to citizens and permanent residents.

A temporary travel ban also stops Filipinos from visiting China and its special administrative regions including Hong Kong.

World Health Organisation representative to the Philippines Rabindra Abeyasinghe urged people to remain calm.

Passengers aboard the flights of the two positive cases were being traced, he said. "This patient came from the epicentre of this outbreak".

Meanwhile, India's first patient of coronavirus who is admitted in Kerala's Thrissur Medical College, is recovering and her condition is stable, said Kerala Health Ministrer K.K. Shailja.

Mr Duque said: "We are now working with the Chinese embassy to ensure the dignified management of the remains according to national and global standards to contain the disease".

The local testing now means test results on possible cases can be returned in 24 hours.

He added the man would be cremated to contain the virus.

Filipino authorities are starting to track down people who were on the same flight as the man and place them in isolation.

Many other safety precautions are now being enforced across the country.

Matt Wolking, a Trump campaign spokesman, said the president "is listening to medical and scientific experts and taking every responsible precaution to protect the American people".

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