‘Covid-19 individual transmission at alarming rate’


  • Cambodia
  • Wednesday, 29 Apr 2020

The Covid-19 risk level for individual transmission is at an “alarming rate” in the Kingdom and its probability is “not low”, warned Health Ministry spokesman Or Vandine.

“Cambodia’s coronavirus scenario is classified as being at an early stage of the pandemic because of ongoing transmissions worldwide. A second wave can occur at any instance, ” she said when responding.

Vandine said her assessment was due to the people becoming more relaxed because, as of Monday, there have been no new cases reported for 15 days in a row. And out of 122 cases, 119 persons have recovered with three still hospitalised.

She warned that Cambodians were now throwing caution to the wind and moving freely, going to the markets, malls and restaurants with little social distancing. She urged the people to continue with good hygiene practises and said this “should become the new normal”.

“I don’t want to label the Covid-19 risk as high or medium, but I can say that the situation in Cambodia is still at an alarming stage which means we have to be vigilant and very careful because the risk for individual (transmission) is not low, ” Vandine said.

Since the initial spike of cases in early March involving participants of a large Muslim gathering in Malaysia, holidaymakers on the Viking river cruise boat, and French travellers in Sihanoukville, new cases slowed before stopping completely on April 12.

However, Cambodia has allegedly exported several cases based on statements by China’s health departments, and airlines in Cambodia that shuttled three to five cases weekly to China since the beginning of April.

According to news reports quoting the Guangdong Province Health Commission, a 37-year-old Chinese national showed symptoms of Covid-19 after arriving in China from Cambodia on April 10.

On April 22, another Chinese national, 41, was confirmed to have Covid-19 after leaving Cambodia for Guangzhou, Guangdong province.

The two cases are allegedly related to a 45-year-old businessman who was diagnosed with Covid-19 in China on April 3.

In a media conference on April 13, Vandine pointed out that the man who lives in Phnom Penh threw a dinner party just before he left the city, and that six close contacts were confirmed to have been infected with Covid-19.

All together, Cambodia had five clusters – Muslim event participants, Viking boaters, French tourists in Sihanoukville, Thai migrant workers and the Chinese partygoers. — The Phnom Penh Post/ANN

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