No China returnee students show coronavirus symptoms yet

ECONOMYNEXT – The 33 Sri Lankan university students flown in from Wuhan, China, and currently quarantined at the Diyathalawa Army camp have not shown any symptoms of the novel coronavirus yet, an official said.

Acting Director-General, Public Health Service Dr. Lakshman Gamlath said all the students in Diyatalawa will continue to be monitored for another thirteen days.

“No student at the Diyatalawa army camp has shown any symptoms yet. They have completed their first day at the camp and will be stationed there for another thirteen days,” said Gamlath.

Sri Lanka confirmed its first novel coronavirus patient on January 27, a tourist who had arrived from China’s Hubei province. The female Chinese national was reported to have made a full recovery and was soon to be discharged from the Infectious Diseases Hospital (IDH).

“The only confirmed patient from our country so far has been the tourist lady from China. We have sent her last biosample to be tested and, if the results are positive, we will discharge her from the hospital,” said Gamlath.

No new cases of infection have been reported from Sri Lankan hospitals so far, he said, adding that the virus spreads through phlegm rather than through any food items as some might believe.

“Contact with an infected person’s phlegm through a cough or a sneeze can transmit the virus. There is no need to worry about contracting it through food,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Sri Lankan Army said rumors about students in Diyatalawa testing positive for the coronavirus are false.

“If something like that did happen, the news would’ve come from me,” Army media spokesman Brigadier Chandana Wickramasinghe told EconomyNext.

“Our medical team assures me the students are fine at the moment and are in good health,” he said.

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Al Jazeera reported the novel coronavirus death toll in China has risen to 361, with the total number of cases of infections rising to 17,205 following reports of  2,829 new cases. The Philippines became the first country outside China to confirm a death from the virus. (Colombo/Feb03/ 2019)

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