Quezon Representative Angelina “Helen” Tan, chairman of the House Committee on Health proposed a supplemental budget amounting to P1 billion for the governmental response toward the threats brought by novel coronavirus.
Tan revealed the proposed budget will be used for the budget requirements of Department of Health (DOH) for Disease and Prevention Control Bureau’s logistics and commodities, Bureau of Quarantine, Health Emergency Management Bureau, Epidemiology Bureau surveillance services, Health Promotion and Communication Service, and for the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.
Tan said in a press conference in Quezon City, “It is about time that Congress approved a supplemental budget to fight the spread of nCoV in the country and protect the Filipinos from this deadly virus.” She also added that this budget proposal is in accordance to the proposal of Department of Health (DOH).
Meanwhile, the number of patients placed under investigation rose to 80 as DOH plans on a more decisive and stricter response in preventing the virus from spreading in the country.
According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque, the reason for the increase in PUIs is attributed to the expansion of the definition of patients under investigation based on latest health guidelines from World Health Organization.
President Rodrigo Duterte has implemented temporary travel ban restricting entry of tourists from Mainland China, including Hong-Kong, and Macau following the first case of nCoV death outside China.
The first case of the death outside China is in the Philippines—a 44-year old Chinese man who was admitted to San Lazaro Hospital in Sta. Cruz, Manila. The patient experienced fever, cough, and sore throat and passed away on February 1.
Duque maintained strict reminder to public to remain vigilant in protecting themselves against the virus as the threat continues to cause international panic.