FALSE: 'Positive' coronavirus case in Laguna hospital

Claim: There is a "positive" case of the novel coronavirus (nCoV) in a hospital in Banlic, Cabuyao City, Laguna.

A version of this claim that went around Facebook narrated that a "friend" of the person who posted the claim "was confined in Global Hospital in Banlic, Laguna," referring to the Global Medical Center of Laguna.

The claim added that the "friend" showed signs of a sore throat on January 21, then was confined at the hospital on January 25 "dahil ang taas daw ng lagnat niya (because of very high fever)." 

Afterwards, on January 29, the friend reported "difficulty breathing" and was "positive nga daw sa coronavirus." 

The friend supposedly "will be transferred to San Lorenzo hospital" where the claim said "3 Chinese nationals from Wuhan" have "died" and "one Chinese" has also "died" at "Global Hospital."

A screenshot captured by Facebook's Claim Check dashboard shows that a certain Maddie Serrano shared the claim to the Facebook group Gandang Filipina Society. 

Readers also emailed this claim to Rappler for verification.

Rating: FALSE

The facts: There was no coronavirus case at the Global Medical Center of Laguna around the time the claim was spread. 

To dispel speculations on social media, its Facebook page posted on Thursday, January 30, that the hospital "has no confirmed 2019 novel coronavirus case." (READ: ‘Novel coronavirus' or 2019 nCoV: What we know so far)

In addition, as of 12 pm on Friday, January 31, the 2019 nCoV tracker of the Department of Health (DOH) showed no person under investigation (PUI) in the Calabarzon region, where the Global Medical Center is located.

The DOH has, so far, recorded 31 PUIs in 7 regions across the country. 

Meanwhile, the DOH on Thursday confirmed the country's first nCoV case. 

Separately, a person under investigation from Yunnan, China died at the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila, but health officials said the man died from complications due to pneumonia. Tests would have to be conducted to see whether that patient was positive for nCoV. 

The World Health Organization on Thursday declared an international emergency over nCoV. As of writing, at least 213 people have died and over 8,000 people have been infected worldwide.

Since the 2019 nCoV outbreak, many false claims about it have circulated on social media. (FACT CHECK: Misinformation on novel coronavirus that spreads online

The DOH strongly encourages the public to monitor official advisories only and get accurate information about nCoV from government agencies and news reports. (LIST: Where to get official, reliable info on novel coronavirus) – Rappler.com

Keep us aware of suspicious Facebook pages, groups, accounts, websites, articles, or photos in your network by contacting us at factcheck@rappler.com. Let us battle disinformation one Fact Check at a time.

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