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Homeland Security

Taiwan reports two imported symptomatic COVID-19 cases from U.S.

ROC Central News Agency

01/05/2021 07:20 PM

Taipei, Dec. 5 (CNA) Two Taiwanese nationals who reside in the United States and returned to Taiwan on Sunday were both suffering symptoms of COVID-19 upon arrival, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said on Tuesday.

Upon their arrival, the two presented proof of a negative COVID-19 test issued within 72 hours of boarding their flights, as required, CECC spokesperson Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said at a press event.

They both were tested for coronavirus at the airport after reporting to the health authorities upon their arrival that they had developed symptoms, and the results came back positive on Tuesday, Chuang said.

One of the new cases was that of a woman in her 70s who said she began having a sore throat and mild cough on Jan. 1, Chuang said, adding that the three people who sat closest to the woman on her flight are now in mandatory 14-day quarantine.

One of the quarantined individuals is a member of the woman's family who was required to take a mandatory COVID-19 test at the airport, as the individual experienced a runny nose upon arrival, the spokesperson said.

Although the result came back negative on Tuesday, the individual will undergo another test to ensure that it is not a false negative, Chuang noted.

The other case involves a woman in her 20s who developed a runny nose in early December and received COVID-19 tests on Dec. 15, 26 and 29 in the U.S., according to Chuang.

All of the results came back negative, he said.

The woman began having an abnormal sense of smell on Jan. 2 and took a flight back to Taiwan the day after with one of her family members, Chuang said.

The family member, the spokesperson went on, was also required to take a COVID-19 test at the airport, as the individual experienced a runny nose upon arrival.

The individual will be given another test, even though the test conducted at the airport came back negative on Tuesday, he said.

The eight people who were seated closest to the infected woman on the flight to Taiwan, including the family member, have been put into home quarantine, Chuang said.

To date, Taiwan has recorded 817 cases of COVID-19, with 722 classified as imported. Of the total, 697 have recovered, seven have died and 113 remain in hospital, according to CECC data.

Since the pandemic began, COVID-19 has infected over 85.6 million people in 191 countries and regions, with more than 1.85 million fatalities, according to CECC statistics as of Tuesday.

(By Chen Wei-ting and Chung Yu-chen)

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