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Palace: No travel ban to countries with Mers cases

01:45 PM June 20, 2015
herminio-coloma

Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

There is no need yet to impose a travel ban to countries where outbreaks of the deadly Middle East respiratory syndrome (Mers) have been reported, Malacañang said Saturday.

Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio “Sonny” Coloma Jr. said the World Health Organization (WHO) has not seen any reason yet to impose a travel ban to Korea and Thailand, where cases of Mers have been reported.

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“Wala pong ganyang advisory. Kasunod din po ‘yan ‘nung paglilinaw ni Health Secretary Janette Garin na wala rin po tayong advisory para sa paglalakbay sa South Korea,” Coloma said on state-run radio DZRB radio.

(We don’t have such advisory. This is in accordance with Health Secretary Janette Garin’s pronouncement that we do not have a travel advisory to South Korea.)

In South Korea, at least 23 have died from the deadly virus, while Thailand has confirmed its first Mers case.

READ: South Korea’s Mers deaths reach 23 | First Mers case confirmed in Thailand­—public health minister

Coloma said the Philippine government is ready for the threat of Mers in case it enters the country.

“Sa bahagi naman po ng ating pamahalaan, ganap ang atin pong kahandaan na labanan ang banta ng Mers coronavirus,” he said.

He said the government has quarantine procedures in place to identify and deal with people suspected to have Mers.

The government, he said, has intensified its information campaign among overseas Filipino workers especially health professionals from countries that have cases of Mers.

Health Secretary Janette Garin has earlier urged the public not to panic over Mers since the Philippines remains free of the dreaded disease.

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Garin allayed the public’s fears by saying that the Mers virus was not airborne but was mainly transferred through respiratory droplets.

READ: Don’t panic, PH still MERS free—DOH

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TAGS: Death, Health, Herminio Coloma Jr., Malacañang, MERS-CoV, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus, Overseas Filipino, Philippines, South Korea, Thailand, virus
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