After a recorded case of the bubonic plague in China, Malacañang guaranteed the public that the country’s borders are currently closed amidst the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said the country is handling the matter seriously and the public need not worry.

“Sineseryoso po natin ‘yan. Pero huwag po kayong mabahala kasi ang pagpasok po ng mga dayuhan sa Pilipinas ay hindi pa po pinapayagan ng malawakan, case-to-case basis lang po,” he said in a televised briefing.

“So sarado pa po ang ating borders at wala pong dapat ikabahala,” he added.

Last February, Malacañang showed similar confidence when COVID-19, then referred to as 2019-ncov, was first reported in the country.

“Let’s start with narratives by saying that everything is well in the country, that there’s nothing really to be extra scared of the coronavirus thing,” President Rodrigo Duterte said in a February 3 press briefing.

“It has affected a lot of countries, but you know in one or two [cases] in any country is not really that fearsome,” he added.

In a recent report, Health authorities in China’s Inner Mongolia region reported that a farmer contracted the bubonic plague, a bacterial infection that triggers fever, chills, headache, fatigue, muscle aches, and swollen lymph nodes.

Bubonic plague can be deadly if not cured promptly with antibiotics.

Also known as the Black Death, the plague spread across Europe in the years 1346-1353 and swept an astonishing 200 million lives.  (RJ Espartinez)

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