There is no outbreak of the mycoplasma pneumoniae or “walking pneumonia” in the Philippines despite the rising cases of respiratory illness in China and other European countries, Health Secretary Ted Herbosa said Tuesday.
Citing the DOH-Epidemiology Bureau, he said increases in the number of flu-like cases could be attributed to the “season of respiratory illness.”
He added that the spike in respiratory illness in China is not caused by a new virus but by previous microbes.
He noted that the spike of respiratory illness in China is not caused by a new virus but by previous microbes like mycoplasma pneumoniae, respiratory syncytial virus, and influenza.
Meanwhile, DOH Undersecretary Eric Tayag said a cough that lasts for two-four weeks can likely be “walking pneumonia.”
However, he said the presence of walking pneumonia has yet to be confirmed in the Philippines because “we have no official reporting here.”
He said doctors are not asking suspected walking pneumonia patients to be tested and instead prescribe antibiotics.
Also, despite a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases, the DOH does not recommend any restrictions as there has not been overcrowding in hospitals.
The DOH, he said, has been continuously monitoring the COVID-19 cases.
“We are expecting this since there is no restriction and many people are coming out this Holiday Season,” he said.
Because of this, he still proposed that use of face mask although it is not mandatory,
“What is important is self-restriction. If one has symptoms of COVId-19 like fever and cough, a COVID-19 test should be immediately conducted. Don’t go to school or your place of work. Wear face masks in places where there are many people. Wash your hands and observe social distancing,” the DOH official said.
In the Philippines, flu-like and other respiratory diseases have increased since January.
As of Nov. 11, the DOH has recorded more than 180,000 cases.
Tayag said this was to be expected.
“We lack immunity to other microbes,” he said.