SARS back as coronavirus; DOH urges people to limit handshakes, touchingBy Rima Jessamine Granali
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Almost a decade after the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) spread globally, the virus “resurfaced” as “coronavirus,” the Department of Health (DOH) said on Monday.
Dr. Eric Tayag, Department of Health (DOH) spokesperson, said the World Health Organization reported three cases of the respiratory illness. Two people from Saudi Arabia are confirmed dead and a Qatari man is still being monitored.
The SARS-like virus has not yet reached the country but the health department assistant secretary said the Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia might cause the influx of people from Saudi Arabia, the origin of the disease.
“No travel restrictions to Saudi Arabia yet,” Tayag said but added that DOH has already coordinated with the Bureau of Immigration.
The virus could be transferred if an inflicted person sneezed within three feet, he explained. “The coronavirus has no cure yet and little is known about it,” he added.
To avoid the SARS-like disease, Tayag advised: “Wash your hands, limit handshakes and touching other people.”