It was reported that a fourth case of Wuhan virus was confirmed in Malaysia yesterday night (25 Jan).
Malaysian authorities said that the fourth patient is a 40-year-old man from the Chinese city of Wuhan. He arrived in Johor Bahru on Wednesday (22 Jan) after travelling by bus from Singapore. The man’s wife and child were also travelling with him.
Subsequently, he developed a fever the next day (23 Jan) and went to a nearby hospital. The Malaysian National Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre received a report yesterday that the man had tested positive for the deadly Wuhan virus. The man still suffered a fever and coughing, but was reported to be stable. Other travellers on the same bus have been isolated by Malaysian authorities pending further tests.
At an earlier press interview in KL yesterday, Malaysian Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad confirmed the first 3 cases of the coronavirus infection in Malaysia. The 3 infected individuals were related to the 66-year-old PRC that was confirmed by Singaporean health authorities to have tested positive for the virus.
The 3 were part of a party of 8 PRCs who were in close contact with the 66-year-old PRC. They entered Malaysia through Singapore. The 3 infected patients are now being monitored at the Sungai Buloh hospital in Kuala Lumpur.
“The three here are the wife, 65, and two grandchildren (ages 2 and 11) of the (66-year-old) man tested positive in Singapore,” said Dr Dzulkefly.
In explaining the chain of events, Dr Dzulkefly said the family had travelled from Guangzhou to Singapore on 22 Jan. “The 66-year old man and his son who showed symptoms and were tested positive for the virus in Singapore were then admitted to the hospital there,” he said.
“Our ministry was alerted by the Singapore Health Ministry that nine other people travelled with the 66-year old. These were his wife, his son (who was tested positive in Singapore), daughter-in-law, two grandchildren and another family of four. “We were then able to reach out to the remaining eight who had made their way to Johor Bahru,” he said. So far, the other 5 tested negative.
Four of the five tested negative have been sent back to China while the fifth was allowed to stay behind to look after her 2 kids who are among the infected 3.
Blocking Wuhan tourists
Speaking on the growing concern of the spread of the virus, Dr Dzulkefly said he has spoken to the Home Ministry as well as the Prime Minister on blocking Malaysians from leaving to China. “As it stands, flights to Wuhan has been cancelled and we are discussing possibilities of having all flights to China cancelled,” he said.
Meanwhile, news media in Philippines reported today (26 Jan) that a total of 156 Chinese tourists were flown back to Wuhan from Kalibo, Aklan yesterday evening.
The Wuhan tourists were returned back on a flight that left around 10 pm, Kalibo airport area manager told the media. Some 150 others are also set to fly out back to Wuhan tomorrow, according to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines.
The Chinese tourists arrived from Wuhan before the Philippines halted its flights to and from Wuhan on Thursday as precautionary measure against the spread of the coronavirus.