Taiwanese COVID-19 survivors urge quarantine compliance

Focus Taiwan
Date: 03/28/2020

Mai Chia-shuo (left) and Mai Wen-ta (right) on board the Diamond Princess (Photo courtesy of Mai Chia-shuo)

Taipei, March 28 (CNA) A Taiwanese father and son who endured a two-month ordeal in quarantine on the cruise ship Diamond Princess, being treated for the COVID-19 coronavirus in Japan, followed by self-isolation at home in Kaohsiung, have a simple message for the 50,000 Taiwanese currently under home quarantine: Stay at home — your cooperation could save lives.

In an interview with CNA — the first in which Taiwanese COVID-19 survivors have agreed to disclose their identities — 85-year-old Mai Wen-ta (麥文達) and 49-year-old Mai Chia-shuo (麥家碩) recounted their experience with the disease and explained why they think such public health measures are necessary.

The pair's ordeal began on Jan. 20 when they set sail from Yokohama, Japan on the Diamond Princess.

The ship, carrying 3,711 passengers and crew, including 24 Taiwanese, made stops in Hong Kong, Vietnam, Taiwan and Okinawa. On Feb. 4, however, it was quarantined in Yokohama Harbor, after it emerged that a passenger who disembarked in Hong Kong later tested positive for the virus.

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