China-returned Nepali student found infected with Coronavirus

Published On: January 25, 2020 09:44 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Jan 25: A Nepali student, who returned here from China recently, has been found to be infected with the Coronavirus, a government official said.

Organizing a press meet, the Ministry of Health and Population confirmed that a Nepali man, who had returned to Nepal from Wuhan in China, has been found to be infected with the virus.

The 32-year-old, who is doing a PhD in China, returned to Nepal earlier this month. 

As he was experiencing respiratory problems, he visited the Shukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital (STIDH) at Teku on January 13. Doctors immediately admitted him to the hospital, suspecting he was carrying the Coronavirus. 

“The blood and sputum samples of the student admitted to STIDH were sent to the WHO Collaborating Center Hong Kong for examinations, and the reports are positive,” said Dr Anup Bastola, spokesperson for STIDH, adding that the patient has already recovered following medication.  

The student was at the hospital from January 13 to 17.

“Relatives of the student might also have been infected with the virus. Their health will be checked,” reads a statement issued by the ministry. The ministry is preparing to send particulars of the infected student to WHO as per the International Health By-laws.

Meanwhile, the government is to expand the capacity of the health desk at Tribhuvan International Airport. During the press meet, the ministry spokesman informed that new virus screening equipment will be added at TIA.

Likewise, aircraft arriving here from China are required to submit passengers’ health-related forms at TIA.

The suspicious patients will be sent to Sukraraj Hospital, Nepal Police Hospital, Patan Hospital and Teaching Hospital for treatment.

The ministry also stated that the Epidemiology and Disease Control Division has been closely supervising the situation and exercising close supervision.

The ministry did not disclose the identity of the infected student.

According to reports, the virus has already claimed 26 lives and infected more than 800 people in China. 

Chinese visitors to Nepal are issued on-arrival visas at TIA. Large numbers of Nepali government officials and others also go to China on Chinese-government sponsored exchange visits and under other arrangements.

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