Malacañang on Wednesday, March11, urged the public to refrain from panic-buying and the sharing of unverified information amid threats of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said “buy only what they need” after reports about hoarding necessities in groceries came out.
“This would only result in undue hoarding and price increases,” he explained.
“Our officials from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) gave assurances that we have ample stock of essential items,” the spokesman added.
Panelo also appealed to everyone to stop spreading unverified information on the coronavirus.
“Let us not circulate unverified information that may only cause unnecessary anxiety among the members of our respective communities and instead maintain good hygiene and observe proper etiquette at all times,” he said.
Panelo reminded the public that those who have had a close contact with people suspected of having the coronavirus “should be prioritized in obtaining medical attention and management.”
“Close contacts include persons with a travel history in the last 14 days to countries with local transmission or those who have a history of exposure to patients who tested positive for COVID-19, i.e., those who provided direct care for a COVID-19 patient or those working together, staying in the same close environment, traveling together, or living in the same household with a COVID-19 patient within the 14-day incubation period,” he said.
Currently, there are 49 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country.
President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, March 9, declared a state of public health emergency.