DOH: 5 OFWs cleared of Ebola virus
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Health (DOH) on Friday said five more of the 15 Filipino migrant workers who returned in batches last month from Ebola-hit Sierra Leone in West Africa had been cleared of the virus while two others remained under close monitoring.
“But I think the two will also be cleared eventually because [if they have been infected] they [will be showing] symptoms by this time,” Health Undersecretary Teodoro Herbosa told reporters Friday.
Fifteen Filipino migrant workers who returned from Sierra Leone were placed under surveillance by the DOH upon their return to the Philippines starting early last month.
Late last month, the first eight were declared safe from the deadly virus, which has killed more than 900 in the biggest outbreak so far of the disease since its discovery in 1976.
Herbosa said the DOH would wait for the lapse of the incubation period of the virus—21 days or until Aug. 28, for a total of 30 days—as a safety measure before clearing the two workers.
Nearly 3,500 Filipinos are working in the three Ebola-hit West African countries—Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.
Herbosa also said that though Ebola is considered a threat to the Philippines, the public has nothing to worry about because the government has the capacity to contain the disease should an infected Filipino worker return to the country.