Update (9:33 p.m. May 30): The CECC has now announced that all confirmed COVID-19 cases in Taipei and New Taipei will have to move to centralized quarantine facilities on the day of their diagnosis.
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — In response to reports of sudden death among people with COVID-19 who are not under proper care, Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) plans to allow only confirmed cases under 60 years old and without chronic conditions to self-isolate, while the rest will be sent to hospitals or centralized quarantine facilities, CNA reported.
The medical capacity of Taipei and New Taipei has been greatly strained amid the recent surge in coronavirus cases. As a result, many confirmed cases have not sought or received proper care.
Recent reports of sudden death among this group have raised concerns about issues of triage and health monitoring, per CNA.
Philip Lo (羅一鈞), deputy head of the CECC's medical response division, said at Sunday’s (May 30) COVID-19 briefing that a nationalized triage standard is in the works and a final decision will be made soon.
Lo added that the preliminary conclusion is confirmed cases under 60 years of age without chronic ailments should remain home, while those who are under 60 but with long-term conditions, as well as those over 60, should go to hospitals or centralized quarantine centers for observation.
The CECC official said those who breathe more than 30 times per minute, whose oxygen saturation is lower than 95 percent, or who experience chest distress, chest pain, or changes in their cognition should notify authorities, whether they are at home or in a quarantine center.
The CECC will purchase 15,000 oximeters and distribute them to local health offices to be used by patients with mild symptoms who are self-isolating at home, Lo added.