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Homeland Security

Taiwan confirms 9 new cases of COVID-19, bringing total to 348

ROC Central News Agency

04/03/2020 04:48 PM

Taipei, April 3 (CNA) Nine new cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus disease were confirmed in Taiwan on Friday, bringing the total in the country to 348 since the pandemic began late last year, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).

The newly confirmed patients are all Taiwanese nationals, seven of whom had contracted the disease overseas, while two are believed to have been infected locally, said Health Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who also heads the CECC.

One of the local infections, a woman in her 40s, likely contracted COVID-19 from case No. 336, a Taiwanese woman in her 50s with no recent history of overseas travel, who tested positive the previous day, the CECC said.

In the new case, the patient sought medical attention twice after she developed a fever and began having chills on March 24, but she was not tested for the coronavirus until April 1 on her third visit to the doctor, according to the CECC.

In the other case categorized as locally transmitted, the CECC said it is looking at the husband of the patient as the possible source of infection because he had returned from the United States on March 17.

The wife, who is in her 60s, developed body aches, a runny nose and a cough on March 20 and visited the doctor several times between March 24-28 before being hospitalized on March 31, the CECC said, adding that it is still trying to trace all her contacts.

In the seven imported cases, the patients all returned to Taiwan between March 14 and April 1 and began showing symptoms March 19-30, the CECC said.

One of the patients is a woman in her 60s, the wife of Taiwan's 338th case and the sixth infected person in a tour group that traveled to Austria and the Czech Republic March 5-14, the CECC said.

She started having diarrhea on March 25 and was tested for COVID-19 on March 31, the CECC said.

In another cluster infection, a woman in her 40s, the wife of Taiwan's 182nd case, became the fifth person to test positive for the coronavirus in a tour group that visited the U.S. March 7-19, the CECC said.

She developed a fever on March 30 and was tested for COVID-19 and admitted to hospital the same day, the CECC said.

The other five imported cases are 2 males and 3 females, who were either working or studying overseas, the CECC said, naming Denmark, the United Kingdom, Thailand, and the U.S.

As of Friday, 298 of Taiwan's 348 cases had been classified as imported, while the other 50 were believed to be local infections, the CECC said.

Fifty of Taiwan's COVID-19 patients have been released from quarantine, while five have died. The others are still in hospital quarantine, the CECC said.

Globally, COVID-19 has infected some 990,338 patients in 181 countries and regions, including 238,820 in the U.S., 115,242 in Italy, 110,238 in Spain, 81,620 in China and 73,522 in Germany, with a total 51,215 fatalities to date, according to the CECC.

(By William Yen)

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