One Coronavirus suspect in Sittwe Hospital

Thant Myat Khaing and Chit Ee Hlaing
Sittwe March 3 2020

One person suspected of contracting Coronavirus is currently in quarantine in Sittwe General Hospital, Rakhine State. It is understood the patient is a 29 year old male who comes from Ponnargyun Township.

According to Sittwe General Hospital Superintendent Doctor Moe Myint Win who spoke with Narinjara, the patient began displaying symptoms of the virus on February 21 after returning to Myanmar on February 18 from Thailand, where he had been working.  His symptoms included a runny nose, cough, chest pains, and fever. 

On March 2 at 10am, he was quarantined in an isolation unit in Sittwe Hospital.  

“We’ve quarantined him, he is not staying with the other patients.  We are providing the necessary medical treatment and support.  We sent nose and throat test samples to Yangon yesterday and we will see if he tests positive for Coronavirus" he said.

The Superintendent explained that the patient’s condition had improved and did not appear critical.  Following injections to help against fever and coughing, his temperature had dropped and he wasn’t feeling lethargic.  He could move around and walk normally.

The Ministry of Health acknowledged the patient’s status was ‘PUI’ –Patient Under Investigation.  Samples had been taken for laboratory testing, the Ministry said in a statement on Monday evening.

Transmission of the virus can occur after consuming infected meat. People-to-people transmission can occur via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or via contact with body fluids such as sweat.

“It’s mainly about frequent handwashing.  Make sure you cover your nose if you sneeze, and cover your mouth if you cough.  Don’t visit crowded areas.  If the place is packed with people and one person has Coronavirus then its possible that everyone can become infected.  Avoid these kind of areas.  That’s the main thing.” Sittwe General Hospital Superintendent said.

According the World Health Organisation, the first cases of Coronavirus, or Wuhan virus, were diagnosed in Wuhan, China, on December 31 2019.  To date, Coronavirus has claimed the lives of 3,123 people, infecting up to 90,920 people in 76 countries.

As of 6pm on March 2, there were 5 suspected cases of Coronavirus in Myanmar.  All were under observation and being treated in respective hospitals.  Their conditions are stable, according to the Ministry of Health.