MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Thursday assured it is ready to assist the Department of Health (DOH) in monitoring the country’s major entry points as it confirms the first case of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
In a statement, the PNP said it has placed its Maritime, as well as, Aviation Security Groups on standby to be mobilized “upon receipt of advisory or guidance from the DOH.”
The PNP said it has also established a direct line of communication with the DOH.
“Likewise, our local police units are now on standby, awaiting notice if needed by DOH to track down other persons that may have been infected by nCoV,” it added.
The DOH earlier confirmed that a 38-year old Chinese woman is the country’s first confirmed case of 2019-nCoV.
She arrived in the Philippines from China on January 21 and sought treatment for her mild cough on January 25.
In light of the country’s first confirmed 2019-nCoV case, the PNP echoed Malacañang’s call to the public to remain calm as the government is already working to contain the virus.
“We assure the public that the PNP remains alert and vigilant to ensure public order and safety and prevent criminal elements from taking advantage of the situation,” it said.
Several lawmakers earlier urged the government to impose a temporary ban on the entry of visitors from China to avert the spread of 2019-nCoV.
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