The global spread of coronavirus, infections surpass 110,000

UNTV News   •   March 9, 2020   •   1213

The number of people infected with coronavirus topped 110,000 across the world as of Monday (March 9) and over 3,800 have died as the outbreak reached more countries and caused more economic damage.

The flu-like virus was first detected in the city of Wuhan late last year and has since spread to more than 90 countries. While new infections have slowed in China, there are concerns other countries are not prepared. More than 25,000 people have been infected and 503 have died from coronavirus outside mainland China as of Monday.

A graphic created by Reuters illustrates the spread of the virus from the epicentre of Wuhan across the world from January 1 to March 9, 2020.

The data is collected from the World Health Organisation (WHO), along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), China’s National Health Commission (NHC), and the Chinese medical community website DXY that combines data from China’s NHC and CDC. (REUTERS CONNECT)

(Production: Aiden Nulty)

Duterte wants government-to-government deal for COVID-19 vaccines

Maris Federez   •   October 27, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte announced on Tuesday that he is more inclined to having a government-to-government deal in procuring coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines to prevent the risk of corruption.

The chief executive reiterated that the country will not beg other nations for access to vaccines, and that he favors purchasing vaccines from China or Russia. The two countries have submitted their applications to conduct clinical trials for their inoculations in the Philippines.

Hindi kami hihingi (we will not beg), we will pay,” Duterte said in a taped address to the nation aired on Tuesday (Oct. 27).

So maganda sana government to government ang transaction. Walang korapsyon, wala lahat kasi government to government (It would be better for the transaction to be government-to-government. No corruption, no nothing because its government-to-government),” he said.

Duterte also said that he had a meeting with Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian on the status of their vaccine.

“We had a meeting with Ambassador Huang. He said the vaccine is there. It would be a matter of paano i-distribute (the manner of distribution) and what kind of transaction would it be for them and for us,” he said.

China’s Sinovac Biotech shall be starting the late-stage trials of its vaccine in the Philippines in November after the Food and Drug Administration has completed the evaluation of its application.

The Philippine government is also evaluating Russia’s Gamaleya Research Institute and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen unit for their application to conduct the Phase 3 trials of their COVID-19 vaccine.

Philippine authorities are also in talks with drugmaker Pfizer Inc. and with Moderna Inc. as potential suppliers.

The government has initially allotted $400 million to buy 40 million doses for 20 million Filipinos, as part of the administration’s plan to have the entire population inoculated.

As of Sunday (Oct. 25), the Philippines recorded 2,223 new coronavirus infections, and 43 more fatalities, bringing the total in the country to 370,028 cases, and 6,977 deaths. —/mbmf

PH COVID-19 cases now over 213K

Maris Federez   •   August 29, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday, August 29, reported that the number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases is now at 213,131.

Of the confirmed cases, 74,611 (35.0%) are active cases.

The health department likewise announced the recorded 627 recoveries, bringing the total number of recoveries to 135,101

There were also 94 recorded deaths, which is now summed at 3,419.

The DOH said these numbers undergo constant cleaning and validation.

Meanwhile, the health department said that it has received reports that several lists containing names of COVID-19 positive patients have been released publicly and have been shared on social media.

In a statement, the DOH reiterated “that while RA 11332 (Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act) provides public health authorities the statutory right to access personal information to enable effective response, it also requires said authorities to ensure patient privacy and confidentiality of the personal information entrusted to them.”

The statement added that “relevant information should only be shared to concerned public health authorities who are knowledgeable of their duty in maintaining data privacy.” —/mbmf

Pyongyang disinfects the city after North Korea introduced tougher curbs against coronavirus

UNTV News   •   July 29, 2020

North Korea’s state-run television on Tuesday (July 28) released a video of Pyongyang workers disinfecting the city as the state introduced tougher curbs against the coronavirus, after it locked down the town Kaesong, on the border with the South, to tackle what could be its first publicly confirmed infection.

Strict quarantine measures and the screening of districts were in progress and test kits, protective clothing and medical equipment were being supplied, the North’s KCNA state news agency said.

The measures come after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un declared an emergency on Sunday (July 26) after a person who defected to South Korea three years ago returned across the highly fortified demilitarised zone (DMZ) to Kaesong this month with symptoms of COVID-19, KCNA reported.

Reclusive North Korea had reported testing 1,211 people for the virus as of July 16 with all returning negative results, the World Health Organisation said in a statement sent to Reuters. The report said 696 nationals were under quarantine. (Reuters)

(Production: Minwoo Park)

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