TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan confirmed three new COVID-19 cases Friday (Jan. 1), two from Indonesia and one from the United States, bringing the total to 802 cases.
Over the past few weeks, Taiwan recorded its first domestic transmission in eight months, in a case linked to a New Zealand pilot with EVA Air. Also, the first two cases of a mutant virus strain from the United Kingdom, both Taiwanese males recently returned from the European country.
Cases No. 801 and No. 802 are male fisheries workers in their 20s from Indonesia who arrived in Taiwan on Dec. 17. Both had produced documents confirming that within three days before their departure they had tested negative, and neither of them showed any symptoms of the virus, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said.
As they went straight into isolation after their arrival and their final tests were conducted just before the end of that period, no contacts have been listed.
Case No. 803 is a Taiwanese man in his 20s who lives in the U.S. He arrived on Dec. 26 bearing a negative test result from within three days before his flight and went into home isolation.
As he developed a fever on Dec. 29, the health authorities scheduled a coronavirus test for him, which turned out positive. No contacts will have to be isolated as the medical staff he consulted all took the necessary precautions, the CECC said.
One of Taiwan’s officially registered cases, No. 530, was later dismissed, explaining why the official numbering reached 803 Friday even there have only been 802 cases. Of the total tally, 707 cases were imported, 56 local, 36 originated from the Taiwan Navy’s "Goodwill Fleet," two were infected on board a flight, and one case was classified as unresolved.
The most recent fatality occurred in May, taking the coronavirus death toll for Taiwan to seven. As of Friday, a total of 113 COVID patients were still being cared for at hospitals, with 682 having been released from care, according to the latest CECC statistics.