Awesome Abra. Colorful and cheerful dancers during the Abra Kawayan Festival Street Dancing Competition that opening day of the March 5 to 9 Abra Kawayan Festival 2020. All 27 municipalities of Abra send in contingents for the competition. (Carlito Dar/PIA CAR)

Educational assistance. OWWA - CAR Regional Director Manuela Peña and OWWA Deputy Administrator Esther Margaux Uson posts with beneficiaries of Tuloy Aral Program, an educational grant for dependents of OFWs who experienced difficult circumstances to ensure that their schooling in public elementary and high schools will continue. The awarding was part of the Reaching Out to OWWA members and beneficiaries at Hotel Supreme, march 10. (Carlito Dar/PIA CAR)

Outstanding Women Leaders. Baguio City Mayor Benjamin magalong administers the oath taking of the Outstanding Women Leaders (OWLs) Inc new set of officials, namely: President - Emerita Fuerte, VP - Jennifer Mejia, Secretary: Mary Ann Tresmanio, Treasurer - Maria Christine Ponce Garcia, PRO - Maria Victoria Bugasto, Business Managers - Mila Lingbawan Singson & Jocelyn Mariano and Board of Advisers - Marlene Baltazar De Castro, Patricia Ann Gallardo Marcelo, Perlita Chan Rondez, Leah Fariñas & Imelda DC Bisnar. The City Officials and OWLS also lead the launching of the Kababaihan Festival 2020 during the Flag Raising Ceremony, Monday March 3. (CCD/PIA CAR)

Awesome Abra. Colorful and cheerful dancers during the Abra Kawayan Festival Street Dancing Competition that opening day of the March 5 to 9 Abra Kawayan Festival 2020. All 27 municipalities of Abra send in contingents for the competition. (Carlito Dar/PIA CAR)

United Front vs COVID. DOH - CAR OIC Regional Director Dr. Amelita Pangilinan affirms that as of March 13, Cordillera remains zero or no confirmed case of COVID - 19 and there are 12 Person Under Investigation that are admitted to various health facilities, wherein four of the already tested negative. She also calls for public cooperation, as she assured that DOH, along with their partner government agencies and hospitals are ready to respond to any eventuality. (Carlito Dar/PIA CAR)

Can COVID-19 be sexually transmitted or spread through other bodily fluids?

On Thursday, Feb. 13, on the eve of St. Valentines Day celebration, Department of Health Metro Manila Regional Director Dr. Corazon Flores dropped by PIA NCR to debunk some misconception circulating in social media about how the coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 is transmitted from person to person.


Department of Health Metro Manila Regional Director Dr. Corazon Flores makes a video with PIA NCR to debunk some misconceptions about the COVID-19 disease that are circulating in social media. (PIA NCR)

Although much is still unknown about how the COVID-19 spreads, Flores said present information is largely based on what is known about similar coronaviruses.

“Ang coronavirus disease o COVID-19 is a new novel coronavirus, it is a large family of corona RNA virus, affecting or causing diseases like common colds, or even severe diseases like MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) or ‘yung SARS o severe acute respiratory syndrome-related respiratory diseases,” Flores said.

She said person-to-person spread most often happens among close contacts of around one meter so better keep some safe distance. The good doctor also said the transmission is thought to occur through respiratory droplets produced every time an infected person coughs or sneezes.

“Ayon po sa datos na ipinabigay sa atin ng WHO (World Health Organization), confirmed na may human-to-human transmission but this is through droplet transmission. Hindi po airborne transmission. So, iyon pong existing information that we have—droplet transmission po si virus.”

Flores explained that these droplets could land in the eyes, mouths, or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. She said touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or their eyes could also infect a person.

“Ibig sabihin po ng droplet, pagka ikaw ay umubo, humatsing, siyempre lalabas ‘yung virus, bababa, magdo-drop, so pwedeng ‘yan sa paligid na ‘yan, pwedeng pag nahawakan mo kahit sa lamesa, and then nahawakan ng ibang tao na may virus, tapos hinawak mo dito sa ilong mo, mag-spread na ‘yun.”

“Kasi pag-cough-out, or pag sneeze-out, it’s either matapon ‘yan depende kung gaano kalayo ‘yung  projection, kasi babagsak ‘yan, maaaring pagbagsak nun [at] nakadilat ka, kaya po sa ating PPE (personal protective equipment) kasama sa proteksyon not only mask, pati yung goggles."

Flores said currently there is still no local transmission of COVID-19 in the Philippines but the country has been preparing containment measures for the possible local transmission of the coronavirus. Moreover, she said it is important to note that how easily a virus spreads person-to-person can vary as some viruses are highly contagious (like chickenpox or measles), while other viruses are less so.

“Kapag ‘yung isang bata nagka-chickenpox ‘yung isa, mahahawahan niya ‘yung kapatid niya. ‘Yun ang local transmission na tinatawag. Sa school, kapag nagkasakit ng tigdas ‘yung isang estudyante, nahawahan niya yung ibang estudyante, ganun ‘yung ibig sabihin ng local transmission. So far, wala pa naman tayo.”

Dr. Flores shares some light moments with PIA NCR Regional Director Marie Angelie Villapando prior to shooting her video. (PIA NCR)

As regards to pregnant women passing the virus to their newborn, Flores said early research says no and not yet conclusive.

“Base po dun sa alam nating datos ngayon, wala pong ebidenta na nagpapatunay na ‘yung isang buntis ay pwedeng mag-transmit sa kanyang anak ng COVID-19.”

Finally, going to the initial question of whether the COVID-19 can be spread through other bodily fluids, the good doctor has this to say:

“Happy Valentines po.. Sa mga mayroong ka-date bukas, enjoy!  Sa mga walang ka-date, makipag-group date kayo sa mga friends. And of course, gusto kong ipaliwanag sa inyo, ang coronavirus disease is not sexually transmitted. Sabi po natin this is transmitted through human-to-human, ‘yun pong tinatawag natin na droplet transmission. But, kung sakali naman po ‘yung ka-date nyo e meron cough and cold, ganito na lang gawin nyo… mag-Hi! Hello! na lang kayo, kung baga, masasabi nga nila, we encourage [them] to avoid ang mga crowd. Kapag may sakit kayo magpagaling muna kaya. Ang ibig sabihin po natin, gusto ko pong ipaliwanag, the COVID coronavirus disease is not a sexually-transmitted disease.” (PIA NCR)

By Jerome Carlo R. Paunan




  • Vegetable shipments from La Trinidad suspended due to COVID-19 precautions

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Fresh vegetables from this part of the country would not be shipped to Metro Manila and other Luzon markets until Tuesday (March 31) after local officials placed the entire town on extreme enhanced community quarantine.

  • La Trinidad enforces extreme enhanced community quarantine

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Mar. 29(PIA)--  Mayor Romeo Salda has placed   the entire municipality under Extreme Enhanced Community Quarantine (EECQ) from March 30 to March 31, 2020    following the confirmation of two COVID-19 positive cases    in the capital town  by the Department of  Health on Saturday.   

  • Cordillera farmers throw away veggies due to lack of buyers amid COVID-19 quarantine

    Some Cordillera farmers went home with empty pockets after failing to sell their harvest at the La Trinidad Trading Post in Benguet due to low demand in vegetables in the region for the past days.

  • Benguet caretaker donates 1M to help fight coronavirus

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Mar. 27(PIA) -- House of Representative Committee of Appropriations Chairperson and Benguet Caretaker Cong. Eric Go Yap donated P1 million to augment the financial resources of the province during the implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in Luzon due to the threat of the COVID-19.

  • Handwash stations now a must in gov't offices,establishments in Benguet

    LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Mar. 27 (PIA) - - With proper handwashing as one of the preventive measures against the pandemic coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19, all  government offices  and business establishments in Benguet province are  now required to provide  hand wash stations  accessible  to all clients and employees.

Mt. Province


  • Lamut town closes gateways due to COVID concerns

    LAMUT, Ifugao, Mar.  27 (PIA) - - After a week of the implementation of  the enhanced  community quarantine CQ and with   confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases  in  nearby areas,  the local chief executive   announced that  all entries  to and from this   municipality  dubbed the “Gateway  to Ifugao”   will be closed for the protection of everybody.

  • Ifugao includes more stakeholders in TF COVID-19

    LAGAWE, Ifugao, Mar.  27 (PIA) - - With the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)  fast spreading in different parts of the country , Governor  Jerry Dalipog  expanded  the membership of the COVID-19 Provincial Task Force (CPTF)  to include other stakeholders  to oversee and implement preventive measures  to stop the entry of  the dreaded disease in the province.  

  • 6 Ifugao cops receive Medalya ng Kagalingan

    LAGAWE, Ifugao, Mar. 19(PIA) - - Six police officers received  citation for their  valued contributions in the arrest of wanted persons  in their respective area of assignments in the province.

  • Ifugao still COVID-free, urges vigilance to avert transmission

    LAGAWE, Ifugao, Mar. (PIA) --The Provincial Health Office  enjoins the public to cooperate and report to their respective Barangay Health Emergency Response Team  individuals who came from  corona virus disease (COVID-19)- affected places for proper action  and monitoring to prevent local transmission.

  • DA-CAR official affirms RTL is pro-farmer

    LAGAWE, Ifugao, Mar. 20 (PIA) - - The Rice Tariffication Law (RTL) that took effect last year promotes the general welfare of farmers nationwide.





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