DOH Region 8 awaits test results of suspected nCoV carrier

The Department of Health (DOH) regional office here expects to get the results Wednesday of the initial test of specimen samples taken from an American citizen who has been quarantined in a hospital here for manifesting symptoms similar to novel coronavirus (2019nCoV).

On Monday, the DOH field office here sent samples taken from a 36yearold American, who is under investigation, to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) in Muntinlupa City.

We expect to get the result within two days after it was received by RITM on Monday. If the result is negative, he will be cleared immediately, said DOH regional information officer John Paul Roca in a phone interview Tuesday.

If the samples from the patient would test positive of 2019nCoV, it will be sent to the Victorian Infectious Disease Reference Laboratory in Melbourne, Australia for a confirmatory test, Roca said.

The DOH confirmed on Friday the report circulating online about an American with travel history from Wuhan City in China who manifested flulike symptoms upon arrival here on January 17.

The man traveled from his workplace in Wuhan City to Tacloban City to visit a friend.

Persons infected with 2019nCoV experience fever, cough, respiratory symptoms, shortness of breath, and difficulty breathing. In more advanced cases, the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and death.

The DOH in Eastern Visayas is now closely monitoring the situation. There is no need to panic since the 2019nCoV cannot cause direct death and is not highly communicable like the Middle East Respiratory Syndromerelated coronavirus (MERSCoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), the DOH said in a statement.

The DOH reported on Tuesday that about 24 persons are under investigation for suspected infection of the 2019nCoV.

Source: Philippines News agency

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