MANILA, March 30 (Xinhua) -- China will send a team of medical experts to the Philippines to help the country fight COVID-19, Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian said on Monday.
In his phone call to Philippine Health Secretary Francisco Duque, Huang said that the main task of the medical expert team is to help the Philippines fight COVID-19, by providing technical advice on epidemic prevention and control, as well as sharing medical treatment experience.
Huang assured Duque that the Chinese Embassy in Manila will continue to work closely with the Philippine department of health to facilitate relevant arrangements of the medical expert team.
Duque expressed his appreciation and gratitude for China's support to the Philippines in battling the epidemic and looked forward to the arrival of the Chinese medical expert team.
Duque also pledged that the Philippine department of health would actively further coordinate with the Embassy to make sure the work of the medical expert team goes smoothly.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told a virtual press conference that the Philippines wants to learn from the experience of the the Chinese experts on how to fight COVID-19.
"We also want to get their advice on the measures that we are implementing against COVID-19. We want them to share their expertise with us on how they are able to control the spread of the disease and lower the number of COVID19-related deaths," she said.
The Philippines reported on Monday that the number of coronavirus disease cases in the country has climbed to 1,546, including 78 deaths.
"As of 4 p.m. today, the Department of Health reports 128 new cases of COVID-19," Vergeire said.
She added that no additional patient has recovered from the disease, adding the number of recovered patients remains at 42.
Vergeire said the availability of test kits and the expanded capacity of laboratories that are capable of conducting tests have paved the way for the Philippines "to detect those that really have to be detected."
"The testing kits are sufficient enough now. The 100,000 test kits from China are already here and we expect more kits from different donors to arrive here within the week, and hopefully we will have sufficient stock for our needs," she said.