Addressing online rumors, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday said that an outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan, China, is not known to resemble SARS, although lab tests are needed to clarify what virus is causing the infections.
Yesterday, a rumor spread online that the outbreak in Wuhan was a SARS-like infection, raising public concern.
The CDC announced that effective immediately, all flights into Taiwan from Wuhan would be boarded by CDC officials and inspected before passengers are allowed to leave the aircraft.
CDC Director-General Chou Jih-haw (周志浩) said these are routine inspections and quarantine measures.
There are 12 flights per week from Wuhan to Taiwan and CDC inspectors would ascertain whether passengers are running a fever, coughing or breathing abnormally, Chou said, adding that passengers exhibiting symptoms would be detained and assessed.
Chou urged people to keep calm, dismiss any news from unverifiable sources and refrain from forwarding any such messages.
The CDC said that people who spread misinformation about diseases or epidemics can be fined up to NT$3 million (US$99,648) under the Communicable Disease Control Act (傳染病防治法), and people who spread misinformation leading to public unrest can be detained for three days or fined up to NT$30,000 under the Social Order Maintenance Act (社會秩序維護法).
While the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention has not released an official statement, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission has, CDC Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞) said.
“The statement says there are a total of 27 viral pneumonia cases, including seven with severe complications,” Lo said. “The main symptom in most cases was a fever and some had difficulty breathing. Pneumonia was detected through chest X-rays and they were all hospitalized in quarantined rooms.”
All of the Wuhan cases were linked to a local market, Huanan Seafood City, and two people have recovered and been discharged, Lo said, citing the statement from Wuhan’s health commission.
Fewer than 30 percent of the cases resulted in severe complications and, according to the health commission, there was no sign of human-to-human transmission, Lo said.
“If the health commission’s information is accurate, then there is a low chance that the infection is SARS,” he said.
However, lab tests would be run to identify the virus that caused the outbreak, Lo added.
Additional reporting by Lin Hui-chin
‘LOCAL TRANSMISSION’: The nation reported 11 new cases, including seven local infections in the north, the highest daily number of cases since the pandemic began The COVD-19 situation has entered the “local transmission” stage and enhanced disease prevention measures have been implemented until June 8, the Central Epidemic Command Center announced yesterday as it reported six locally transmitted cases with unclear infection sources. The center reported 11 new cases yesterday: four imported cases from India, and seven local infections in northern Taiwan, the highest daily number of cases since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that one of the local infections — case No. 1,201 — is a woman who is a family member living with
SIXTEEN LOCAL: Three COVID-19 infections are linked to a cluster at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 to a case in New Taipei City and three had unclear sources The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday urged people to increase vigilance and thoroughly practice preventive measures against COVID-19 as it reported 16 locally transmitted cases of the disease. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that 21 cases were confirmed in Taiwan yesterday: 16 local cases, four imported cases and one case undetermined. The locally transmitted cases are three linked to a cluster of infections at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 associated with a previous case in New Taipei City and three with unclear sources of infection. The CECC on Tuesday reported a cluster
TRACING TROUBLE: An infected man who had said that all his children were abroad was found to have a daughter in Kaohsiung who tested positive, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported a new daily record of 29 local COVID-19 cases, including seven cases with unknown sources of infection. Of the 29 cases, 16 are linked to tea houses in Taipei’s Wanhua District (萬華), Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, told a news briefing in Taipei. The 16 are tea house workers or visitors, or their contacts, the CECC said. Workers and visitors to the establishments have frequent interpersonal contact, but few protective measures against the COVID-19 pandemic are in place, Chen said, urging those who have been exposed or have
GRID PROBLEM: A Taipower spokesman said that the blackouts were not due to usage exceeding supply, nor were they because of a problem at the Singda plant There were rolling blackouts across Taiwan yesterday due to a grid malfunction at the Singda Power Plant (興達電廠) in Kaohsiung’s Yongan District (永安), while Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電) said that it was working “as hard as possible to resolve the issue as soon as possible.” At 2:37pm, a malfunction at an ultra-high-voltage substation in Kaohsiung’s Lujhu District (路竹) triggered four generators at the Singda plant to go offline, cutting power output by 2.2 million kilowatts and prompting Taipower to initiate rolling blackouts nationwide as it worked on the problem. Taipower spokesman Chang Ting-shu (張廷抒) told a news conference in Taipei that