Taipei, Four people who recently returned from overseas have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of cases in Taiwan since the start of the pandemic to 462, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Monday.
One of them, is a woman in her 20s who worked in the southern African country of Lesotho since December last year and returned to Taiwan Saturday after traveling to South Africa on July 23 and transiting through Dubai, CECC spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said at a press briefing in Taipei.
The woman developed a headache on July 19, followed by a runny and congested nose, abnormal sense of smell and cough on July 21, the CECC said in a statement.
Her symptoms persisted during her arrival in Taiwan and the woman was tested after notifying airport health officials, said Chuang, adding that she was placed in quarantine with the results coming back positive Monday.
A total of eight friends and colleagues who traveled back to Taiwan with the woman have been instructed to remain in home isolation, Chuang said.
Another two cases were a mother in her 50s and her son in his 20s who have been living in South Africa and returned to Taiwan on Saturday after transiting through Dubai, Chuang said.
The mother and son, who last exited Taiwan in January, developed a runny nose, sore throat, nasal congestion and a cough from July 21-22, the CECC said.
The man was tested at the airport and quarantined after telling health officials of his symptoms, while his mother was sent to hospital with a fever of 39 degrees Celsius on arrival in Taiwan, Chuang said.
Their results came back positive on Monday, he added.
Health officials are currently trying to identify the people who sat near them on their flight to Taiwan, the CECC said.
The remaining case, is a man in his 60s, who visited relatives in the United States in February and returned to Taiwan on July 20, Chuang said.
The man was asymptomatic upon his arrival in Taiwan but started experiencing an abnormal sense of taste and smell, and fatigue on July 24 during home quarantine, Chuang said.
The man contacted his local health department after he started to experience shortness of breath, a sore throat and joint pain on Sunday, Chuang said.
X-rays showed that he had signs of pneumonia and the man was tested, with the results coming back positive on Monday, Chuang added.
No one has been identified as having close contact with the man, who immediately went into home quarantine by himself, Chuang said.
“All four of the latest cases claim to have worn masks on their flights, with some even wearing hazmat suits,” Chuang said.
The new imported cases of COVID-19 on Monday raised the total number of cases in Taiwan to 462, of which 371 have been classified as imported, 55 as locally acquired, and 36 as a cluster infection on board a naval ship, an outbreak that was later confirmed to have originated in Taiwan.
The latest cases follow three new imported cases confirmed on Friday from people returning from the Philippines.
Taiwan has not recorded any locally transmitted cases since April 12, according to CECC data.
To date, 440 COVID-19 patients in Taiwan have recovered and seven have died, with the rest still in hospital, the CECC said.
Globally, COVID-19 has infected 16,230,427 people in 187 countries and regions, with a total of 649,538 fatalities, according to CECC statistics as of Monday.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel