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Homeland Security

Taiwan confirms 1 new case of COVID-19 in Navy cluster

ROC Central News Agency

04/25/2020 03:19 PM

Taipei, April 25 (CNA) Taiwan confirmed one new case of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on Saturday, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 429 since the pandemic began late last year, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).

The latest case was the 31st resulting from a cluster infection on board the "Panshi," a fast combat support ship which was part of a three-vessel flotilla that visited Palau in mid-March, said Health Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who also heads the CECC, at a daily press briefing.

The flotilla left Taiwan in early March, stopped in Palau from March 12-15, and returned to Taiwan on April 9, but the crew were not allowed to disembark until April 14-15 because of quarantine regulations.

The latest patient, a male cadet in his 20s, tested negative for COVID-19 after all 744 crew on the three ships were placed in quarantine on April 18, following the discovery that some on board had contracted the disease, the CECC said in a statement.

However, the cadet was found to have antibodies in his blood for the coronavirus and was sent for a second test on April 24, the CECC said, adding that he was confirmed positive Saturday.

As of Saturday, 1,865 people were listed as having come into contact with the 31 confirmed cases, with 534 required to isolate themselves at home, the CECC said.

Of the 534 people undergoing home isolation, 173 have been tested and 154 found to be negative, the CECC said.

Besides the 534 in home isolation, the others among the 1,865 people who had contact with the Panshi's confirmed cases have been asked to practice "self-health management," which means wearing a mask at all times, taking and recording one's temperature twice a day, and minimizing time spent in public.

Of Taiwan's 429 COVID-19 cases to date, 343 have been classified as imported, 55 as local infections, while the 31 from the "Panshi" are still being investigated to determine whether the source of the infections was imported or domestic, according to CECC statistics.

To date, 275 COVID-19 patients in Taiwan have been categorized as recovered, six have died, while the others are still hospitalized, the CECC said.

Globally, COVID-19 has infected 2,833,642 people in 184 countries and regions, including 912,628 in the U.S., 219,764 in Spain, 192,994 in Italy, 187,708 in France and 150,383 in Germany, with a total of 195,715 fatalities, according to CECC statistics as of Saturday.

(By William Yen)

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