April 5, 2020 – China on Sunday sent a dozen anti-epidemic medical experts who have first-hand experience in dealing with the coronavirus in Wuhan City and Hubei province, where the highly contagious respiratory disease originated and rapidly escalated worldwide.
China has been largely successful in slowing down the transmission of the deadly coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as reports of imported cases surged after Beijing relaxed travel restrictions and normalcy returning to Wuhan City.
About 82,000 people in China were infected and the death toll was more than 3,100, the seventh largest in the world after Italy, Spain, United States, France, United Kingdom and Iran.
“The Chinese experts arrived with invaluable first-hand experiences to share on fighting and containing COVID,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin said in a tweet, welcoming the doctors and nurses at the airport.
The Chinese experts arrived with invaluable firsthand experiences to share on fighting and containing Covid. Thank you China. pic.twitter.com/OdQW7wbTKO
— Teddy Locsin Jr. (@teddyboylocsin) April 5, 2020
“Virus respects no borders,” Beijing’s ambassador to Manila Huang Xilian said at a ceremony welcoming the Chinese medical experts at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
“We always say that a friend in need is a friend indeed. During the time of crisis, the Chinese government and people feel keenly for the health and safety of the Filipino people. We will always stand together with the Philippine government and people to cope with the challenges and overcome the epidemic.”
The 12-member team is led by Director-General Zheng Huiwen and includes Zhuo Huichang, chief physician and critical care medicine of the First Affiliated Hospital of Fujian Medical University. The team is made up of doctors and nurses and will be deployed at the Chinese General Hospital in Manila.
Huang said the deployment of the medical team was made to assist the Philippines in its fight against the COVID-19 epidemic and upon request of the Philippine government.
The Chinese medical expert team is the among the first two teams sent by the Chinese government to Southeast Asian countries. The team has front line experience in Hubei province to fight against the epidemic, he added.
The team also brought another batch of medical supplies, including 300,000 surgical masks, 30,000 medical N95 masks, 5,000 medical protective suits, 5,000 medical face shields, and 30 non-invasive ventilators.
“I hope the arrival of this team will help the Philippines to improve its ability of epidemic prevention and control as well as diagnosis and treatment, so as to boost the confidence of the public in overcoming the COVID-19,” he said.
Last month, China donated 100,000 testing kits and other medical supplies to the Philippines, allowing the health department to increase its screening capacity to determine the extent of the coronavirus infection in the country.
About 16,000 people have been screened in the country, resulting to nearly 3,246 people found positive for the virus. One hundred fifty-two people had died and 64 have recovered from the disease as of Sunday. (Juno Buena/MM)
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