Taiwan guards against second wave of COVID-19 infections

TAIPEI (The China Post/ANN) — The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC, 中央流行疫情中心) on Wednesday reported 7 new imported cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infections, bringing the total number in Taiwan to 329.

According to the CECC, the new cases include 3 men and 4 women with ages ranging between 20 to 70. They returned to Taiwan between March 19 and March 30 and started showing symptoms for COVID-19 from Feb. 29 to March 27.

The new imported confirmed cases are all Taiwanese nationals who contracted the disease overseas, among which 6 had traveled to the U.S. and one to the U.K. Of the 7 new cases, five were tested upon entering the country, while the other two were already under quarantine.

Case 325 and 329 traveled to the U.S. with another friend between Feb. 6 and March 30. The former reported losing their sense of smell on March 23, and the latter reported similar symptoms a day later.

Both stated their conditions upon arrival in Taiwan, they were immediately tested and the infections were confirmed today. Their friend has yet to show symptoms but is currently under quarantine for further investigation.

Health authorities said that the other 5 imported cases are all individual cases, and their reasons for travel included study, work and family visits.

As of Wednesday, 283 of Taiwan’s 329 cases had been classified as imported, while the other 46 are believed to be local infections, the CECC said.

Forty-five of Taiwan’s COVID-19 patients have been released from quarantine, while five have died. The others are still in negative pressure rooms in hospitals, but all of them are in relatively stable conditions, the CECC said.

As for the 367 Taiwanese who recently returned from the Chinese province of Hubei, the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, the CECC said none of them have shown symptoms of COVID-19 so far, and they are all still staying in designated quarantine facilities.

Globally, COVID-19 has infected 838,568 patients in 180 countries and regions, with 41,367 fatalities to date, the CECC said.

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