Novel coronavirus cases in the Philippines now at 52

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Philippines reported 3 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus on Thursday, March 12, bringing the total number of patients who tested positive to 52. 

This is the lowest number of new infections reported since the cases began spiking on Sunday, March 8.

The Department of Health (DOH) said all 3 patients are Filipinos, two of whom have not traveled outside the country while one came from a trip to the United Kingdom:

The 69-year-old woman started showing symptoms on March 8, while the 26-year-old patient developed his symptoms on February 28. The 52nd case, a 52-year-old female, had a travel history to the United Kingdom and started showing symptoms on March 1.

All 3 cases tested positive for COVID-19 – the disease caused by 2019-nCoV – on Wednesday, March 11.

The DOH said it has coordinated with concerned local government units to conduct "extensive" information gathering and contact tracing activities on the 3 new patients.   

Of the 52 patients who tested positive for COVID-19 – the disease caused by the novel coronavirus – two have died: a 44-year-old Chinese man who traveled to the Philippines from Wuhan, China, and a 67-year-old Filipina woman with no travel history outside the country.  

She is the Philippines' first local death due to the novel coronavirus.

More to follow.

Mara Cepeda

Mara Cepeda writes about politics and women’s rights for Rappler. She covers the House of Representatives and the Office of the Vice President. Got tips? Send her an email at or shoot her a tweet @maracepeda.