MANILA – Five of the seven Filipinos tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in Switzerland are doing well while one had been discharged and the remaining one on home quarantine, Philippine Ambassador to Switzerland Dennis Lepatan said Tuesday.

“There are two Filipinos infected with Covid, one has been discharged while the other is on home quarantine. There are five cases in Geneva, we have a consulate there that is handling the five cases, they are okay, the situation here is calm,” he said in Filipino during a phone interview at the Laging Handa briefing.

So far, no other Filipino has reported any problem amid the Covid-19 situation in Switzerland.

But the envoy urged members of the Filipino community there to remain at home and refrain from travelling outside or returning to the Philippines for the meantime.

He noted that the risk of getting infected is higher, especially with the airport currently tagged as a Covid-19 hotspot in Switzerland.

“Maganda naman po iyong mga serbisyo dito… mga health services, hindi naman overloaded iyong hospitals nila; iyong ICU nila 60% lang ang utilization. Sa tingin ko mas magandang stay in place na muna, kaysa mag-risk na magbiyahe at malayo ang Pilipinas baka ma-infect pa sila (The services here are good. The hospitals are not overloaded and the ICU is only at 60% utilization. I think it’s better that they stay in place rather than risk travelling since the Philippines is far and they might get infected),” he said.

While none has yet to express clear intention of return to the Philippines, Lepatan said one Filipino has inquired about the possibility of a repatriation and was assured assistance will be extended if necessary.

At present, the embassy is issuing daily advisories for Filipinos who may require help from the government.

Lepatan said the embassy is temporarily closed to public but its staff and officials are working from home to attend to consular needs of overseas Filipinos in the country. (PNA)

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