6 co-passengers of 2 nCoV patients show flu-like symptoms

Some six co-passengers of the two Chinese nationals who earlier tested positive for the 2019 novel coronavirus acute respiratory disease (2019-nCoV-ARD) have shown flu-like symptoms, the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) said on Thursday.

CIDG deputy director, Col. Rhoderick Armamento, said the three passengers from the Cebu Pacific flight DG 6519 (Cebu-Dumaguete) last January 21 who were already contacted have manifested symptoms of respiratory infection.

The CIDG has been tapped to do contact tracing of the passengers of two domestic flights boarded by the two Chinese nationals.

The three are among the 23 out of a total of 61 passengers of the flight who were already contacted.

Armamento, meanwhile, said three other passengers from the Philippine Airlines (PAL) flight PR 2542 (Dumaguete-Manila) on January 25 are now under quarantine.

In the said flight, 25 out of 132 passengers were already contacted.

Armamento said these incidents were already reported to the Department of Health (DOH).

"All passengers who have been contacted by the CIDG were advised to avoid unnecessary contact with people," he told reporters in a press briefing.

The passengers showing symptoms were already advised to self-quarantine and stay in a room.

"Huwag muna lalabas until such time dumating na 'yung mga experts [Don't go out until the experts come]," he said.

Tracing has been done through phone calls only, Armamento said.

Some passengers could not be contacted because some contact numbers provided numbers were non-existent.

"Iba doon, talagang hindi nagri-ring, 'yung iba out of coverage [Some phone numbers were not ringing, some were out of coverage]," he added.

Currently, the CIDG is asking vital information from various agencies including the PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG).

The CIDG has yet to visit the addresses of some passengers.

"We see to it na kapag reresponde ay meron din tayong [when we respond, we have] protective gear or equipment and in tandem with the DOH," hw said.

Meanwhile, Armamento said the contact tracing for the passengers of the Cebu Pacific flight 5J 241 (Hong Kong-Cebu) on January 21 was not assigned to the PNP-CIDG.

"Hindi po binigay na task sa amin yan. Ang sabi po ng DOH ay sila na bahala doon. [The task was not given to us. DOH officials told us that they would take care of it]," he said.

The passengers contacted were cooperative the authorities, he said.

He assured that all efforts were being undertaken to contact all passengers on the two flights.

The Chinese couple who came from Wuhan took three flights from January 21 to 25.

The couple arrived in Cebu from Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the virus outbreak, via Hong Kong on January 21 onboard Cebu Pacific flight 5J-241.

The couple then went to Dumaguete from Cebu on January 22 via Cebu Pacific flight DG-6519 and left for Manila on January 25 via PAL flight PR-2542.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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