All 123 Taiwan contacts of Japanese coronavirus case test negative

Student at Kaohsiung university 'weak' positive case, unlikely to be infectious, according to Central Epidemic Command Center

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CECC Spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang 

CECC Spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — All 123 people in Taiwan in close contact with a Japanese student diagnosed with the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) after her return home have tested negative, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced Friday (June 26).

A first batch of tests on 109 individuals were negative on Thursday (June 25), with results for the remaining 14 made public by the CECC at a news conference Friday. The 20-year-old woman, who had been studying at a university in Kaohsiung City, was a “weak” positive case and unlikely to be infectious, CECC Spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) told reporters.

Asked if it could be determined where and when the asymptomatic student had been infected, he said it would not have occurred within the most recent two weeks. Either the young woman was a "false positive" or the infection occurred one or two months ago, he said. The CECC will keep a close watch on about 100 teachers and students who were in contact with the Japanese woman and will start testing for antibodies next week, CNA quoted Chuang as saying.

The case had fueled fears that Taiwan’s record of more than 74 days without local infections was being threatened. The country has counted a total of 447 coronavirus cases, including seven deaths.