Two foreign children in Palawan suspected of having novel coronavirus

Marje Pelayo   •   January 27, 2020   •   1705

PALAWAN, Philippines – A Brazilian child and a Taiwanese child are under observation at a hospital in Palawan after showing flu-like symptoms related to novel coronavirus (nCoV).

According to authorities, the Brazilian patient arrived in El Nido from Wuhan on Wednesday (January 22).

Meanwhile, the Taiwanese national was reported to have had interactions with the locals before he was detected to have influenza.

The two patients remain in isolation for 14 days for observation in accordance with the protocol of the Bureau of Quarantine.

Dr. Audie Cipriano said they are still waiting for the test results on the blood samples of the patients which they expect the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) will release today.

“The fever is gone already, (only) cough and colds,” noted Cipriano, the Chief of Medical Staff in Ospital ng Palawan.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health (DOH) is still monitoring the conditions of the 36-year-old man confined in a hospital in Palo, Leyte after manifesting flu-like symptoms from his recent trip in Wuhan, China. MNP (with reports from Grace Casin)

Teenage boy dies in London after testing positive for coronavirus

UNTV News   •   April 1, 2020

A 13-year-old boy in London who tested positive for coronavirus has died, a hospital said on Tuesday (March 31).

“Sadly, a 13-year old boy who tested positive for COVID-19 has passed away, and our thoughts and condolences are with the family at this time,” King’s College Hospital said in a statement.

“The death has been referred to the coroner and no further comment will be made.”

The number of deaths from coronavirus in the United Kingdom rose by 27% as the UK government said 1,789 people have died in hospitals as of 1600 GMT on Monday, an increase of 381 from Sunday, the largest rise in absolute terms yet. (Reuters)

(Production: Gerry Mey, Michael Fiorentino)

Ukraine dusts off Soviet-era ventilator designs to help fight coronavirus

UNTV News   •   March 30, 2020

Ukraine is dusting off Soviet-era ventilator designs that lay forgotten in a mothballed military factory for years in a bid to ramp up domestic production of equipment that could help in the fight against the coronavirus.

In response to an urgent appeal by hospitals to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy for ventilators, some of the country’s wealthiest men chipped in to buy machines from abroad.

But representatives of state defense conglomerate Ukroboronprom, which runs the state-run Burevisnyk plant in Kiev, are leading an initiative for Ukraine to boost domestic output based on technology developed there long ago.

Deputy Director General of Ukroboronprom, Mustafa Nayyem, told Reuters that a computer with the relevant technical information had disappeared and the engineers that designed the ventilators were retired or dead.

Eventually, officials tracked down a man who knew where printouts for the designs were kept in the factory on yellowing paper. He was working in a local supermarket.

The plant is in no fit state to restart production, so Ukroboronprom will share the technology with interested private companies and has offered to help certify a new product quickly and provide production facilities, Nayyem said.

“We will give everyone access to this documentation because we understand that the crisis is now,” Nayyem said.

Some 20 years ago around 6,000 people worked at the Burevisnyk factory, producing hardware including radar systems for submarines. It also had a sideline making ventilators once used to treat Soviet soldiers in Afghanistan.

Falling demand since the end of the Soviet Union and a lack of state funding has pushed the plant into bankruptcy.

A handful of employees remain, including its acting director and security guards. The power and heating were cut off five years ago. The plaster on the walls is cracked and old machinery lies covered in dust.

Its last big government order for ventilators came in 2008, the plant’s Acting Director Vitaly Khodzitsky told Reuters. The plant used a bank loan to produce them, but the government money did not arrive and the plant never recouped its costs.

For a population of about 40 million people, Deputy Health Minister Viktor Lyashko said there were about 1,117 ventilators ready for coronavirus patients.

Governments around the world are scrambling to procure more of the breathing devices that can blow air and oxygen into the lungs. They are crucial for the care of people with lung failure, which can be one of the complications suffered by patients with severe COVID-19, the disease coronavirus causes.

The number of coronavirus cases has reached 480 in Ukraine, with eleven deaths. The country is one of Europe’s poorest and health spending per capita is a fraction of its western peers. (Reuters)

(Production: Sergiy Karazy, Margaryta Chornokondratenko, Natalia Zinets)

UK PM Johnson’s adviser Cummings isolating with coronavirus symptoms

UNTV News   •   March 30, 2020

Dominic Cummings

The coronavirus outbreak at the heart of the British government spread on Monday (March 30), with Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s senior adviser, Dominic Cummings, self-isolating with symptoms just days after the British leader himself tested positive.

A Downing Street spokesman confirmed a Daily Mail report that Cummings, one of the most powerful men in the government, had developed symptoms of COVID-19 over the weekend and was now self-isolating.

Johnson on Friday (March 27) became the first leader of a major world power to test positive for the virus. His health minister, Matt Hancock, also tested positive and the government’s chief medical adviser, Chris Whitty, is self-isolating.

Britain initially took an approach to contain the spread of the disease that was modest in comparison to European countries such as Italy.

But Johnson imposed stringent controls after projections showed a quarter of a million people could die. (Reuters)

(Production: Ben Dangerfield)

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