Gordon: Separate lanes in airports, ports needed for visitors from China
Senator Richard Gordon has urged the government to put stricter quarantine areas or “firewalls” for individuals who will test positive for Coronavirus.
He also proposed having a separate lane in all ports for travelers who are coming from China for them to be properly checked for any symptoms of the deadly virus.
Gordon made the suggestion on Friday amid reports that the new Coronavirus (2019-nCOV) is now in the country. But the Department of Health (DOH) said there “is no confirmed” case yet of the virus in the Philippines.
“Dapat ‘yung ating airports, kapag napadaan ka o galing ka sa China, dapat may investigation,” he said in the interview.
He said the Department of Health (DoH) should have isolation wards where suspected carriers of Coronavirus can stay “without having to go inside the main wards.”
“Every hospital, every health facility public, private or run by local governments have to put in place contingency plans for patients who are consulting for runny nose, cough, sore throat and fever,” he said.
Gordon also said that the public “should not panic but take all the necessary precautions” and called on the government agencies to immediately put in place the preparedness plan to stem the spread of the virus.
“Let us not wait for this to go out of hand. Let us sound the alarm now and prepare for a worst-case scenario,” the senator from Olongapo City said.
“Through timely preparedness, we will save lives and protect our people from an unthinkable and preventable illness that could cause serious disease and unexpected death,” he said.
He added, “So, what are the plans? What are the protocols for hospitals? What measures are in place to prepare for an outbreak?”
The Coronavirus is in the same family as the deadly severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
Currently, the death toll has risen to 17 and 500 more cases were reported across China, South Korea, Thailand, Japan, Macao, Taiwan, and the United States, according to reports.