THE Department of Health (DOH) clarified on Tuesday afternoon, September 26, 2023, that there are no cases of Nipah Virus in the Philippines.
This, after a memorandum was released and circulated by a university in Cagayan de Oro for the implementation of online classes for basic education in relation to "contamination by the new Nipah Virus."
In an advisory issued by DOH on Tuesday, the health department stated that "there are no laboratory confirmed cases of the infection" in the country.
"While there are indeed cases of students and faculty experiencing similar signs and symptoms, it is not conclusive to declare such a virus as the causative agent," DOH stated.
"We do encourage preventive measures to ensure no further similar infections are spread, such as hand washing, proper wearing of masks and other minimum public health standard measures," the agency added.
On September 26, 2023, Liceo de Cagayan University issued a memorandum stating that all basic education classes from Kindergarten to Grade 12 will have their online classes effective on September 27, 2023 until further notice to "avoid contamination by the new Nipah Virus."
The university also advised the basic education faculty members to conduct their online classes in the main campus, following the health and safety protocols when entering the school premises.
On the same day, Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan Junior High School issued an advisory stating that they will revert to online classes starting September 26 until 29 to "prevent further spread of the infection either viral or bacterial among students and teachers."
These advisories were posted and have spread on social media.
DOH assured that they are currently coordinating with the City Health Office of Cagayan de Oro to investigate this further.
The Cagayan de Oro City Health Office, for its part, said that they are doing surveillance to make sure the city is safe.
"So far, wala pay cases sa Nipah virus sa Philippines much more sa Cagayan de Oro, but nevertheless naghimo na og surveillance ang City Health Office para masiguro nga luwas ang syudad." Cagayan de Oro City Health Officer Dr. Rachel Dilla said.
"However, we are appealing to the schools to report to us cases of headaches and other flu-like symptoms. As of now, we are encouraging the people to wear face masks, frequent hand washing and proper cough etiquette,” she added.