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Global Times

Man cleaning frozen seafood at Tianjin Conrad hotel catches COVID-19 virus

Global Times

By Wang Qi and Li Lei Source:Global Times Published: 2020/6/17 23:54:56

Tianjin reported one new confirmed COVID-19 case on Wednesday night, a 22-year-old man working at Tianjin's Conrad hotel. The patient has been washing dishes in the hotel since May 30, occasionally cleaning frozen seafood.

Tianjin Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Tianjin CDC) said that the man has no history of traveling in the 14 days prior to the onset of his illness, no contact history with confirmed cases or suspected cases.

The patient had a fever on Tuesday and went to three hospitals and received nucleic acid testing. He tested positive on Wednesday morning, with light symptoms.

All the current 93 close contacts have been quarantined for medical observation, while others are being screened and their workplaces and homes have been disinfected.

Previously, an employee at a Conrad Hotel branch in Tianjin's Nankai district confirmed to the Global Times on Wednesday that the hotel was suspended from operating, but refused to elaborate on whether the information circulating online about one of its chefs testing positive for COVID-19 was true and all customers present at the hotel being isolated for quarantine.

When reached by the Global Times on Wednesday, Huanghe Hospital in Nankai district confirmed that a man from the Conrad hotel received a nucleic acid test at the hospital and the result was positive on Wednesday. "The employee was transferred to Haihe Hospital," a medical staffer from Huanghe Hospital said.

According to netizens' tip-offs and online information, seven employees from the hotel went to Beijing recently, but none of them visited the Xinfadi market. None have had close contact with the patient.

On Ctrip, a Chinese online travel booking platform, all the hotel rooms displayed a "sold out" message and Dianping.com, China's Yelp-like rating website, shows that the hotel has been suspended.

Tianjin CDC on Wednesday said that there are zero new domestic cases, zero silent carriers, and zero suspected cases found as of 6 pm today. The sudden news at night frightened local people in Tianjin.

Three Tianjin locals living in Nankai district told the Global Times on Wednesday night that they heard the rumor today, prior than the official voice. And all of them were concerned that the city, which is situated 120km away from Beijing, is at risk of a second wave of COVID-19 infections following Beijing's unexpected outbreak at Xinfadi wholesale food market on June 11.

"I am concerning that the coronavirus is on the imported seafood, as the man's job is cleaning frozen seafood," said a Tianjin dweller.

Tianjin CDC said on Wednesday that they have screened 8,103 people who might have been in contact with the outbreak in Beijing and throat swabbed 6,465 people working in the fields of selling, transportation and production of seafood with all negative results.

Tianjin also suspended some cross-regional coach services to Beijing on Tuesday as to avoid a spread of infection.

The municipality requires citizens who had been to medium and high risk areas in Beijing in the last 30 days to report to their communities, and those who conceal their itineraries and cause the spread of the disease will be held accountable, local news reported.

According to the report, people who travel from Beijing are allowed to enter Tianjin as long as their health QR code appears green. Those with red codes should be quarantined for two weeks in a designated spot, and those with yellow codes should quarantine at home for two weeks.



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