Stores run out of alcohol, face masks as COVID-19 fears prompt panic buying

Medical supply stores in Metro Manila have ran out of supplies of alcohol and face masks as some Filipinos have resorted to hoarding commodities following the surge of confirmed cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in the country.

This came after the Department of Health reported dozens of new confirmed cases this March, bringing the total number of cases to 49 as of Thursday morning.

Jhun Tabada, a salesman from Manila, expressed his disappointment over the alleged overpricing of face masks amid the ongoing threat of Covid-19, saying this move from business owners negatively affects the poor.

With this, the Palace on Wednesday advised the public to remain calm and buy only what was needed as panic buying and hoarding would only cause price hikes.

In the meantime, Malacanang also confirmed that President Rodrigo Duterte will have himself tested for Covid-19 to ensure that he is fit and healthy to perform his duties.