Taiwan reports new imported coronavirus case from Mexico

Arrival from Mexico marks Taiwan's first new coronavirus infection in two weeks

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The Zócalo in Mexico City.

The Zócalo in Mexico City. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Thursday (May 21) announced one new imported case of Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19), the first in two weeks.

During his daily press conference on Thursday afternoon, Minister of Health and Welfare and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) announced that there was one new imported case of coronavirus, raising the total number of cases in Taiwan to 441. No. 441 is a Taiwanese man in his 30s who flew to Mexico for work in late January and returned to the country on Wednesday (May 20).

Chen said that during the man's stay in Mexico, he developed a fever April 30 to May 1 and a slight cough on May 5. From May 11 to May 13, the man started to suffer from diarrhea.

When the man arrived in Taiwan on Wednesday, he took the initiative to inform quarantine personnel that he was experiencing symptoms of coronavirus. Quarantine officers then administered a test for the disease before sending him to a quarantine center for isolation.

The man tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday and is currently undergoing treatment in a hospital isolation ward. Chen emphasized that the man wore a mask throughout his flight — and while at the airport — and did not come in contact with any friends or relatives before being placed in isolation.

The CECC announced that they had received 226 reports of people with suspected symptoms on Wednesday (May 20). Since the outbreak began, Taiwan has carried out 70,100 COVID-19 tests, with 69,077 coming back negative.

Taiwan has now extended its streak of no new local infections to 39 days, but the latest imported case ended its record of 13 consecutive days without one coming from abroad. Out of 441 total confirmed cases, 350 were imported, 55 were local, and 36 came from the Navy's "Goodwill Fleet."

Up until now, only seven patients have succumbed to the disease, while 407 have been released from hospital isolation. This leaves only 27 patients still undergoing treatment in Taiwan.