2 COVID patients 'critical', Philippine death toll stays at 1: health dept


Posted at Mar 11 2020 09:23 AM | Updated as of Mar 11 2020 09:42 AM

An isolate from the first US case of COVID-19 is seen in a transmission electron microscopic image obtained from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, US March 10, 2020. Hannah A Bullock and Azaibi Tamin, CDC/Reuters

MANILA — Two patients were in "critical condition" on Wednesday due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), as the Philippines' death toll from the respiratory disease stayed at one, said the health department.

The 2 patients in critical condition are both aged 60 above and have been intubated to help them breathe, said Health Secretary Francisco Duque III.

He did not give additional details about the pair.

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Over the weekend, the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine in Muntinlupa said a 62-year-old COVID patient in its care was in critical condition.

The patient regularly visited a Muslim prayer hall in San Juan. He later infected his wife, who experienced only "mild" symptoms, the DOH earlier said.

The Philippines so far confirmed 33 cases of the disease. The country's lone fatality is Chinese tourist from Wuhan City in central China where the virus was first reported late last year, said Duque.

Some 600 people so far tested negative for the disease, he said.

President Rodrigo Duterte declared Monday a state of public health emergency to curb the pathogen's spread.

More than 117,339 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in 107 countries and territories, killing 4,251 people, according to an Agence France-Presse tally early Wednesday.