25 who came into contact with pilot placed under quarantine

  • Nation
  • Saturday, 26 Apr 2003

KUALA LUMPUR: Twenty-five people who came into contact with the latest probable SARS case have been placed under quarantine, said Health Ministry deputy director-general Datuk Dr Ismail Merican yesterday. 

They are nine hotel staff, eight crew members, three healthcare providers from a private clinic, four hotel guests and an Immigration officer whom health authorities had traced to have had contact with the local 30-year-old Transmile Air pilot who recently returned from Hong Kong.  

On Thursday, Dr Ismail said nine people who had contact with the man were placed under quarantine. 

“We found out that before the man went to the Penang Hospital, he had gone to a private clinic (for treatment). Five of the crew members are being quarantined in Penang while the other three are in Kuala Lumpur,” he said at the daily press briefing on the SARS situation. 

Another two hotel guests – a man from Kedah who has been traced to Selangor and a woman from Terengganu – had checked out before health authorities could serve the quarantine order on them, said Dr Ismail. 

“The lady has assured us that she will report herself to the Terengganu Health Office,'' he said.  

He also urged anyone who had come into contact with probable SARS cases to report themselves for quarantine as it was one way of ensuring that local transmission of the killer virus did not occur. 

The pilot is the sixth probable SARS case. Three had a travel history of going to China, two to Singapore and one to Hong Kong. 

The country has had two SARS-related deaths. 

There were nine notifications on Thursday at 6pm with four suspects, four non-SARS and one probable. All are Malaysians. 

One of the suspect cases is a 35-year old Ipoh Hospital woman attendant who had worked in the isolation ward from April 13 to April 19. 

The rest were a 25-year old man from Kedah who works at the Tuas Shipyard in Singapore and stays in Johor Baru (who fell ill when he returned to Kedah on April 23), a 29-year old student who visited Beijing from February to April 20 and fell ill on April 22 and a 21-year old bus driver. 

There are 21patients in isolation wards while total notifications are 260.  

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