Vietnam probes Hong Kong coronavirus case following Da Nang visit

By Nguyen Dong   February 20, 2020 | 05:15 am PT
Vietnam probes Hong Kong coronavirus case following Da Nang visit
Da Nang International Airport is left deserted amid coronavirus fears. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong.
Vietnamese authorities are verifying reports of a Hong Kong tourist said to have tested Covid-19 positive after a three-day visit to Da Nang.

Nguyen Tien Hong, deputy director of Da Nang’s Department of Health, said Wednesday he was coordinating with relevant agencies to verify information on the 45-year-old man who visited the city from January 30 to February 1 before returning and testing positive for Covid-19 in Hong Kong.

"So far, local authorities have not recorded any information coinciding with the visitor. If Hong Kong counterparts provided his name, it would be easier to check," Hong said.

Besides, Hong said the aforementioned visitor had returned to Hong Kong 14 days ago, and that there were currently no coronavirus patients in Da Nang.

"We will strengthen monitoring across the area," he added.

Ngo Thi Kim Yen, director of the city’s health department, reported to city leaders it had been 11 days since the passenger left Da Nang before he revealed symptoms of infection.

Therefore, questions regarding possible incubation in Da Nang was "uncertain and unfounded," she added.

In case of local incubation, the virus concentration would be very low and not initially prone to spread to those coming in close contact with the patient, Yen explained.

So far, Da Nang has reported 155 suspected cases of coronavirus infection, with 153 discharged and two under strict observation.

Last Sunday, Health Protection Center (CHP) of the Hong Kong Department of Health recorded three new cases of coronavirus infection.

In particular, the 45-year-old man, who has suffered fever and a sore throat since February 12, tested positive for viral infection on February 16.

Hong Kong has so far recorded 65 cases of infection, including two fatalities.

Vietnam has confirmed 16 infections and 14 have been discharged. A Vietnamese-American man in Saigon has recovered and is expected to be released from hospital Friday.

WHO said Saturday that Vietnam has responded well to the epidemic from the very outset, preventing its spread.

As of Thursday, the global death toll has climbed to 2,129 and confirmed infections topped 75,000, mainly in mainland China. More than 16,000 patients have recovered.

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