The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday confirmed five new measles cases associated with a cluster outbreak in Taipei, saying that 1,981 people who had come into direct contact with the patients would be monitored for symptoms until Sept. 6.
The cases are likely associated with a man in his 30s living in northern Taiwan, who was infected with measles in Vietnam, returned home on July 29, transmitted the disease to his flatmate, and was confirmed to have measles on Wednesday, the centers said.
One of the five cases confirmed yesterday is a man in his 30s, who was on the same flight with the index case on July 29, and was in Vietnam from Aug. 5 to Wednesday, so he might have been infected by the index case or by other people in Vietnam, it added.
The other four patients are nurses who work at Cathay General Hospital’s emergency room who had come into contact with the index case, the CDC said.
The nurses started experiencing symptoms between Friday last week and Thursday this week, CDC Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said, adding that one of them was vaccinated for measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) in 2013 and two were vaccinated last year, but the other has not been vaccinated.
The hospital on Friday held an emergency response meeting to discuss prevention measures and asked the medical practitioners who have had direct contact with the index case to have their measles antibody levels measured and receive an MMR vaccine if no antibodies are found, hospital deputy superintendent Lee Chia-long (李嘉龍) said.
The hospital also asked medical practitioners with higher antibody levels to help screen patients with a fever, control the personnel who are allowed to enter the emergency room, take disinfection measures and put up posters to warn people about clustered measles cases, he said.
One hundred and nineteen measles cases have been confirmed this year — 72 domestic cases, among whom 51 had come into contact with confirmed cases, and 47 imported — the CDC said.
Measles is a highly contagious disease that can spread through coughing and sneezing, and it is most contagious in the four days before and after the onset of rashes, the centers said.
BLUE WAVE: The KMT’s Chiang Wan-an defeated the DPP’s Chen Shih-chung and is to become Taipei mayor, while President Tsai Ing-wen stepped down as DPP chairperson after many of the party’s candidates, handpicked by the leadership, performed poorly The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday flipped key mayoral seats in Taipei, Taoyuan and Keelung, and won control of 13 out of 22 cities and counties in the nine-in-one local elections. President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) last night resigned as Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairperson over a poor showing by the party’s candidates, who were handpicked by the DPP leadership rather than chosen through primaries. The Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) won its first high-profile race with Hsinchu mayoral candidate Ann Kao (高虹安) defeating Shen Hui-hung (沈慧虹) of the DPP with 45.02 percent of the vote to Shen’s 35.68 percent. Voters were choosing more than
UNDETERRED: The US chip designer’s plan showed that Taiwan remains attractive for investment by global companies despite cross-strait tensions, Wang Mei-hua said US graphics chip designer Nvidia Corp is planning to relocate its Hong Kong-based logistics center to Taiwan, Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua (王美花) said on Wednesday. The government had been in discussions with Nvidia regarding tax incentives to facilitate the move since last year, Wang said in an interview with the Central News Agency, adding that the two sides had reached a consensus. Wang did not provide details about the timetable for the move or the planned tax arrangements for Nvidia. The relocation would boost the local economy, as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) is a major supplier of graphics processing
Kaohsiung police last week busted a money laundering operation suspected of seeking to interfere in tomorrow’s local elections. The operation was allegedly headed by a man surnamed Lee (李), who had received NT$9.5 billion (US$306.18 million) from China over the past six months, Kaohsiung police said yesterday, adding that Lee’s ring is suspected to be part of a larger Chinese effort to interfere in the elections and support pro-China candidates. Officers arrested Lee, 35, and his girlfriend, searched his mansion, and seized the money he had allegedly received from China and three luxury vehicles, police said. The operation was disguised as an online
CAUTION: Wearing a mask in crowded places and for people with chronic illnesses or allergies can help prevent COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, the CECC said The mask mandate for outdoor settings is to lifted on Thursday, and the weekly cap on international inbound travelers is to be removed on Dec. 10, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said at its regular news conference yesterday. The center also announced that starting from Friday, children aged five to 11 can receive a COVID-19 vaccine booster, and that rules for visiting hospital patients are to be partially eased from Dec. 10. While wearing a mask will no longer be mandatory outdoors, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Victor Wang (王必勝) reminded the public that it would still be required