Doctors warn of spike in coronavirus cases in Taiwan over holiday

Doctors report increase of both suspected and confirmed coronavirus patients during Qingming break

Taiwan News
By: Keoni Everington, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Police trying to get crowds to maintain social distancing. (Hengchun Police Department photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwanese doctors are warning of a spike in cases of Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) after the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) expressed alarm at the large crowds seen during the Qingming holiday.

Such was the concern over crowds breaking the CECC's prescribed social distancing measures that the center on Saturday (April 4) took the unprecedented measure of sending a nationwide text warning residents to avoid the Pingtung County beach resort town of Kenting, along with 10 other popular tourist spots. On Sunday, emergency room physician Pai Yung-chia (白永嘉) said on Facebook that before the four-day holiday had ended, many ERs across the island were seeing an influx of patients complaining of symptoms suspiciously similar to COVID-19, including fever, a cough, sore throat, and diarrhea.

Pai said that not only doctors and nurses but also radiologists, respiratory therapists, pharmacists, and even janitors and security guards have to wear extra personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect themselves against transmission from new suspected cases. He said that every patient suspected of having the disease is being tested and that all personnel who come in contact with them are donning PPE in case they test positive.   [FULL  STORY]

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