By Lee I-chia / Staff Reporter
The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported 121 new COVID-19 cases – 118 imported and three local.
Centers for Disease Control deputy director-general Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), who is spokesman for the CECC, said the imported cases include 64 people who tested positive upon arrival at airports.
Thirty-eight were from Vietnam, ten from Indonesia, seven from the United States, six from the Philippines and five from Hong Kong, CECC data showed.
Photo courtesy of the Central Epidemic Command Center
Yesterday’s number of imported cases was a slight decrease from Saturday’s 120, the country’s highest daily imported case count.
When asked about a possible reason for the high numbers, Chuang said the mandatory quarantine period was shortened from 14 days to 10 days on March 7, allowing people quarantined under the old and new guidelines to end the quarantine and have undergone a test at around the same time for the past couple of days, leading to an increase in the number of cases.
The three local cases are from Taipei, Tainan and Chiayi counties, Chuang said.
Two of them are linked to a cluster linked to a wedding banquet in Chiayi on Sunday last week, he said.
The Taipei case – a man in his 20s – was one of those attending the banquet and developed a sore throat on Saturday, Chuang said.
He used a rapid test himself, which was positive, and it was later confirmed positive at a hospital with a cycle threshold (Ct) of 16, he said.
The Chiayi County case — a woman in her 60s — did not attend the wedding but is the wife of a previous case that did, Chuang said.
She was tested on Friday, which came back positive with a Ct score of 18, he said.
The Tainan case is linked to a previous cluster involving a tour group and a hospital in the city, Chuang said, adding that the case is a family member of a previous case and she tested positive yesterday after ending isolation, with a Ct value of 16.
Separately, a previous case – an elementary school principal who attended the banquet – was tested on Friday after another participant was confirmed positive on Thursday but did not wait for his test result and attended another banquet on Friday night. On Saturday it was confirmed that he has COVID-19.
The Chiayi county government yesterday fined the school principal NT$15,000 for being asked to practice self-health management, including avoiding crowded public gatherings, while waiting for the test result.
Additional coverage by CNA
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