Filipino in UAE tests positive for novel coronavirus

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 8) — A Filipino in the United Arab Emirates has been infected with the novel coronavirus, according to government-run media in the Gulf state.

The official Emirates News Agency on Saturday reported two confirmed cases of the new coronavirus or 2019-nCoV. The other one is a Chinese national. This brings the total number of nCoV cases in the country to seven.

The patients are under observation and medical care compliant with health standards, the news agency said quoting the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention.

This is the second time that a Filipino tested positive for the nCoV. A Filipino seafarer was earlier confirmed to have contracted the virus while onboard a cruise ship in Japan. The Filipino was a crew member of the Diamond Princess where 537 other Filipinos were also quarantined.

In the Philippines, there are now three cases of the novel coronavirus, all of them are Chinese visitors. One of them, a 44-year-old Chinese man died of acute respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus at the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila on February 1. He is the first reported fatality outside China's mainland.

People with a history of travel from Wuhan – a Chinese city where the novel coronavirus originated – and those who had contact with infected people are considered patients "under investigation" if they show flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough, and cold. At least 215 people were placed under this category in the Philippines.

The new coronavirus has killed 724 people, mostly in China, the world's most populous country. It has also infected more than 34,400 people across 27 countries and territories, according to Johns Hopkins University's Center for Systems Science and Engineering that tracks coronavirus cases across the world.

UAE, the second top destination of overseas Filipino workers next to Saudi Arabia, is the only Middle Eastern country with confirmed nCoV cases.

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