— With Jocelyn Montemayor
THE number of overseas Filipinos infected with the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-10) continues to increase, the Department of Foreign Affairs.
Data provided by the DFA showed that as of Sunday, 335 Filipinos in 30 countries were infected with the virus, with four deaths. Two of the fatalities were from Europe and one each from the Asia-Pacific and Middle East/Africa regions.
The DFA said 220 of these Filipinos are still undergoing treatment while 111 have recovered and have been discharged from the hospitals.
Majority of the reported cases came from the Asia-Pacific region with 173, followed by Europe with 86 cases, and 47 in the Middle East and African regions.
In the Americas, there are 29 Filipinos confirmed to have been infected with the virus.
“The 19.64 percent increase in the confirmed cases can be attributed to the number of new cases reported in the Asia-Pacific and European regions,” the DFA said.
OFWs in CHINA
Ambassador to China Jose Santiago Sta. Romana said the situation in China, epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in December, is getting better and no Filipino in mainland China has been infected.
He, however, said Filipinos in mainland China are seeking help from the Philippine government for economic reasons. He said many of them – teachers, musicians, and hotel workers — are employed under a “no work, no pay” scheme.
He said that since the lockdown in parts of China, which included work stoppage and class suspension, several Filipinos have been unable to work.
He said the Philippine embassy has talked with some of the employers of the affected Filipinos, especially those working in schools.
Sta. Romana also undocumented Filipinos, most of them working as household helpers, are also seeking help and want to return to the Philippines.