Over 28K overseas Filipinos repatriated amid COVID-19 pandemic
MANILA, Philippines — More than 28,000 Filipinos overseas have been repatriated back to the Philippines as countries continue to face the coronavirus pandemic, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) reported Friday.
During the online meeting of the House committee on overseas workers affairs, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Sarah Lou Arriola reported that 28,589 overseas Filipinos have returned to the country as of May 21.
Of this number, 19,200 are sea-based overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) while 9,389 are land-based overseas Filipinos.
A total of 2,187 Filipinos, meanwhile, were repatriated using the Assistance-to-Nationals Fund of the DFA, Arriola said.
Arriola also reported that 2,461 Filipinos overseas have been afflicted with COVID-19. From this, 861 have recovered, 285 have died, and 1,315 remain to be active cases.
Most of the cases are in Europe at 752 cases, followed by Middle East and Africa (713 cases), Americas (544 cases), and Asia and the Pacific (452 cases).
Arriola said stand-by fund is granted to their posts overseas to be used for repatriation assistance and provision of emergency supplies, medicine, food, and accommodation to Filipinos affected by COVID-19.
DFA also provides assistance in the shipment of remains as long as these are “hermetically sealed and subject to cremation within 12 hours upon arrival in the Philippines.
As of May 21, there are 13,434 COVID-19 cases in the country, with the death toll at 846 and recoveries at 3,000.
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