By Lee I-chia / Journalist
The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported 76 locally transmitted COVID-19 infections and 10 deaths.
Health and Welfare Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳 時 中), who heads the center, said that among the 76 infections, 14 people tested positive during quarantine or at the end of quarantine, which means 62 people were not under surveillance.
Taipei reported the most cases with 48 cases, followed by New Taipei City with 24 cases, Taoyuan with three and Hsinchu City with one, he said.
Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times
As of yesterday morning, 77.3% of the confirmed cases reported between May 11 and Thursday – 10,551 out of a total of 13,654 cases – had been released from isolation, Chen said.
He said the number of people diagnosed with COVID-19 on Thursday was high due to extensive testing in Taipei’s wholesale markets.
Forty-one of 76 local infections came from extensive testing in markets, and all of the local infections reported yesterday were from four cities and counties, suggesting the COVID-19 outbreak in Taiwan is under control, Chen said.
Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times
Regarding cluster infections in Taipei wholesale markets, Chen said 88 cases have so far been confirmed at the First Fruit and Vegetable Wholesale Market (第一 果菜 批發市場) in Wanhua District. in Taipei (萬 華), 21 were confirmed at the Second Wholesale Fruit and Vegetable Market (第二 果菜 批發市場) in Zhongshan District (中山) and 111 at Huannan Market (環 南 市場) in Wanhua.
Of the total of 220 confirmed cases, 93 are residents of Taipei, 117 are residents of New Taipei City and 10 are residents of other cities or counties, according to CECC data.
The CECC and the Taipei City Government on Friday established a Joint Forward Command Center to respond to cluster infections in the city’s wholesale markets.
Chen said a test station has been set up at Huannan Market and started operating from 8 a.m. yesterday.
COVID-19 alert messages were sent to around 80,000 cell phone users near Huannan market, advising them to get tested if they went to the market and showed symptoms of COVID-19 after on June 8, he said.
Contact tracing for 40 confirmed cases at Huannan market and five cases at Taipei Agricultural Products Marketing Co (台北 農 產 運銷) has been completed, and 183 close contacts of the 40 confirmed cases have been placed in isolation, while about 2 600 people at the First Fruit and Vegetable Wholesale Market have been tested, Chen said.
Yesterday, more response measures were taken in all three markets, including testing at the first wholesale fruit and vegetable market, asking the second wholesale fruit and vegetable market to draft a disease prevention operation plan. and strengthen crowd controls at Huannan market, he said.
The clusters found a lack of control over staff frequently entering and exiting markets, so establishments should recount and list all associated workers, not just vendors, and strengthen health surveillance measures, a. Chen said.
Another round of testing of all staff at Huannan Market is expected to take place on Wednesday next week, he added.
Regarding a cluster infection involving the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 in Pingtung County, Chen said that 490 people associated with a confirmed case who have visited Fangliao General Hospital multiple times have been placed. in isolation and 466 of them tested negative.
He said 2,436 people who were not close contacts also tested negative.
A total of 12,744 people tested negative at community testing stations in Fangshan (枋山) and Fangliao (枋寮) townships in Pingtung County, he added.
“We can say that the local communities are safe, and if the results of the remaining tests (…) are negative, we can consider that the Pingtung cluster is finished,” Chen said, adding that the local situation would be monitored until ‘see you next week on Sunday. 14 days after the diagnosis of the last case.
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