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Homeland Security

Taiwan confirms 1 new case of COVID-19; total at 437

ROC Central News Agency

05/04/2020 04:06 PM

Taipei, May 4 (CNA) One new case of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) was confirmed in Taiwan on Monday, bringing the total to 437 since the pandemic began late last year, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).

The new case was a woman in her 30s who went to the United States on Jan. 30 to study and was asymptomatic when she returned to Taiwan on April 9, said Health Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who also heads the CECC, at a daily press briefing.

The woman was originally confined to her home for 14 days as has been the case for all people arriving in Taiwan from overseas since March 19.

On April 11, she was reclassified as being in "home isolation" because she was found to have been on the same flight into Taiwan as someone confirmed to have COVID-19, Chen said.

Being in "home isolation" is similar to the standard home confinement in that people in both categories are under electronic surveillance, but those in home isolation are also checked on twice a day by medical authorities.

The woman was on the same flight as Taiwan's 383th case, a man in his 60s who was confirmed positive on April 11, according to CECC records.

The woman had a runny nose on April 15 but simply thought she had allergies and did not say anything about it, Chen said.

But after completing her home isolation period on April 24, she contacted health authorities on April 27 to report both a runny nose and nose congestion she was experiencing, the CECC said in a statement.

She was given a test, which showed a "weak positive" for COVID-19, and was admitted to a local hospital and put into a negative pressure room on April 30, Chen said.

After additional tests on May 1 and May 2, she was confirmed to be positive Monday and is currently asymptomatic, Chen said.

To date, 347 of Taiwan's 437 cases have been classified as imported, while 55 are believed to be local infections, according to CECC statistics.

The other 35 are military personnel who were serving on the Panshi fast combat support ship, part of a goodwill fleet that visited Palau from March 12 to 15. The CECC has yet to confirm whether their infections were local or imported.

To date, 334 COVID-19 patients in Taiwan have recovered, six have died, and the others are in the hospital, the CECC said.

Of the patients in the most critical condition, six are on respirators and two are receiving prolonged cardiac and respiratory support, CECC advisor Chang Shan-chwen (張上淳) said Saturday.

Globally, COVID-19 has infected 3,542,687 people in 186 countries and regions, including 1,175,505 in the U.S., 217,466 in Spain, 210,717 in Italy, 202,054 in France, and 186,599 in the United Kingdom, with a total of 247,066 fatalities, according to CECC statistics as of Monday.

(By William Yen)

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