Coronavirus: Malaysian woman and tourist from Wuhan bring confirmed cases to 14

PUTRAJAYA: A Malaysian woman who is the first case of local transmission and another woman from Wuhan, China, are the two latest positive cases of the novel coronavirus.

It brings the number of coronavirus positive cases in Malaysia to 14, comprising 10 Chinese nationals and four Malaysians.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said for the first local transmission case, the 40-year-old woman who had no history of visiting China, was a younger sister of the local man who tested positive last Tuesday.

He said the woman had direct contact with her brother when he returned to his village in Sungai Petani, Kedah, for the Chinese New Year celebrations.

“She developed fever and sore throat on Feb 1, and started coughing on Tuesday.

“As soon as her brother was found to be positive, she was traced by the Health Ministry.

“She sought treatment and tested positive on Wednesday.

“Currently, she is at the isolation ward at Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah in Alor Setar and is in a stable condition,” Dzulkefly said at a press conference here.

Her husband and two teenage sons have tested negative for the coronavirus.

Meanwhile, contact tracing for her brother remains ongoing, as the ministry searches for more people who came into close contact with him over the past few days.

“We have already reached out to 42 individuals so far and taken samples from them.

“Out of 42, 41 have tested negative for the virus, with the sole positive case being the man’s sister.”

Dzulkefly also said that rumours that the man had also been to Kelantan for the Chinese New Year celebrations were untrue.

The man did not travel to China recently. However, he had a recent business meeting in Singapore which was attended by delegates from China.

Meanwhile, the other new positive case is a tourist from Wuhan who arrived in Malaysia on Jan 25 with her mother and three friends.

“She developed symptoms on Feb 1, and went to seek treatment at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital. The doctor instructed her to undergo home surveillance.

“However, daily checks by health officials saw that she still remained symptomatic, and was subsequently admitted to the Kuala Lumpur Hospital on Wednesday.

“She tested positive for the coronavirus on the same day and is currently placed in an isolation ward,” said Dzulkefly.

He explained that the novel coronavirus could only be spread to those who are in close proximity with those infected.

“This coronavirus is transmitted through droplets. This can be spread when the infected person sneezes or coughs.

“If you touch a surface which contains the infected droplet, and then you touch your face, you could contract the virus.

“But the droplets can only travel at most, a metre away from the person who emits them.

“If you are in the same room with an infected person, but the person does not emit droplets, the virus cannot infect you,” Dzulkefly said.

He advised those who are ill to stay away from attending gatherings during Thaipusam.

“For those who are attending the celebrations, please observe precautionary measures such as wearing face masks and constantly washing hands with soap and sanitisers.”

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coronavirus , outbreak , Wuhan , pneumonia


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