Taipei, A Taiwanese national who recently tested positive for COVID-19 in Shanghai after arriving from Taipei was likely infected with the disease in the United States, a spokesman with the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Sunday.
CECC spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said the man in his 20s had lived in the U.S. for more than 14 years and only arrived in Taiwan on Aug. 4 before traveling to Shanghai on Aug. 27.
He was tested upon arrival in the Chinese city as required by China’s COVID-19 protocol, and the test result came back positive on Saturday.
The patient has so far shown no symptoms other than a mild fever of around 37.8 degree Celsius, according to Chuang, citing information received from Chinese authorities.
While the man was in Taiwan, he was subject to the mandatory 14-day home quarantine at his residence, followed by a seven-day period of self-health management in which a person must wear a mask at all times, Chuang said.
That meant he had limited contact with other people and thus posed little threat to the community.
The patient’s CT value in the PCR test of above 35, which Taiwan’s CECC interprets as a weak positive, and positive tests for both IgM (the first antibody the body makes when it fights a new infection) and IgG antibodies indicate the man may have been carrying the virus for an extended period of time, Chuang said.
According to Chuang, IgG antibodies generally start appearing two to three weeks after the infection.
That led the CECC to conclude that the infection likely happened while the man was still in the U.S., even if the man said he did not have any COVID-19 symptoms back then, Chuang said.
The CECC is doing contact tracing to determine if his family or anybody who may have come in contact with the individual showed any signs of the disease, he added.
Chuang made the comments after Shanghai authorities reported earlier Sunday three new imported cases of the coronavirus, including one involving the Taiwanese national who flew from Taipei to Shanghai on Aug. 27 and was put in quarantine upon arrival.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel