Pinoy seafarer has no Ebola, just flu

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Pinoy seafarer has no Ebola, just flu
The Philippine embassy in Nigeria reports that the Filipino tested negative for the Ebola virus

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs said on Saturday, August 23, a Filipino seafarer feared to have contacted Ebola in Togo, West Africa tested negative for the deadly virus.

DFA spokesman Charles Jose said in a text message, “Our embassy in Nigeria reported [the] test on the Filipino national yielded negative results for Ebola; he was diagnosed with the flu.”

Philippine embassy officials in Nigeria were coordinating closely with Togo officials on the status of the Filipino seafarer who, at first, “exhibited Ebola-like symptoms,” Jose earlier said.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said over dzRB that the health department has been screening people entering the country as a precaution. Health authorities are on the lookout for people with Ebola-like symptoms and those who came from countries with Ebola cases.

The virus has claimed the lives of at least 1,427 mostly in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – the 3 worst hit countries. More people have died in this outbreak than any other, with the number of Ebola cases now reported at over 2,600.

 The World Health Organization has said the speed and extent of the outbreak is “unprecedented.”

Valte said that based on the WHO advisory issued in July, people in countries with Ebola cases should not be traveling abroad.

The Department of Health, according to Valte, has a very stringent testing process which involves monitoring of passengers with suspected infection for 30 days. She cited the case of 15 passengers in the past month who came from West Africa and who were subjected to monitoring. They tested negative after 30 days.


The Ebola virus, formerly known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever, is a severe, often fatal illness in humans, according to the WHO. It is transmitted to people from wild animals and spreads through human transmission.

Fruit bats are considered the natural host of the fatal virus.

Ebola symptoms include the sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat. The WHO said this is followed by vomiting, diarrhea, rash, impaired kidney and liver function, and in some cases, internal and external bleeding.

It has no known cure although some affected by it have recovered after taking ZMapp, an experimental drug. –

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