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Filipinos On Board the Diamond Princess Return Home as Coronavirus Fear Arises

Diamond Princess

By: Elena Grace Flores

The local government of Capas in Tarlac has some concerns. The New Clark City Athlete’s Village or NCC is the quarantine area of the Filipino repatriates from the Diamond Princess. They are set to arrive there on Sunday from Yokohama. Their fears are legitimate over the coronavirus. Precautions are in place, Malacañang assures them. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said the exact number of repatriates is not yet known. Their tests must show negative results for COVID-19. Symptoms of the illness are enough to leave them in Japan. The ones who recovered can join the repatriation. Another 14-day quarantine period locally is at stake.

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Coronavirus outbreak: Number of confirmed COVID-19 cases on cruise ship in Japan rises

Coronavirus Update

Cases of the novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19, are rising inside the Diamond Princess cruise ship docked in Japan. As Mike Armstrong reports, putting thousands of people under quarantine was supposed to help stop the spread of the virus, but it may have had the opposite effect.

They Want to Go Home

All the Filipino crew and passengers of the Diamond Princess cruise ship who are negative for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) express their desire to return home to the Philippines. The Department of Health (DOH) attests to this. 495 Filipinos are still on the cruise ship after the two-week quarantine period passes. The 43 Filipinos who are positive for the virus are still in the hospital.

Two Chartered Planes for the Diamond Princess Crews

Duque said that two chartered are ready to bring back the Pinoy crew and passengers. They voluntarily present themselves to return to the country. The DOH official hints that they are not discounting any possibility that some of them have a change of heart on the day of their departure. So, the figures can still change.

The Coronavirus Fears in Other Countries are Real

The Americans from the Diamond Princess had some complaints about the handling of their transfer. Their ordeal in the so-called floating prison did not serve a purpose when the negative ones have to join the untested people in one airplane. Another doctor from Germany who had the chance to inspect the ship also narrates his fearful experience of how the mismanagement of the disease on board went. The Philippines should have the courage to learn from their plights to keep the Filipinos safe.

Fr. Jose Bosch Innovative Skills Training Advocacy Cooperative (ISTAC)