Nine more individuals have recovered from the coronavirus infection, bringing Brunei’s total number of COVID-19 recoveries to 65, announced the minister of health.
Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Md Isham Hj Jaafar, in a press conference, revealed that one new positive case has been identified, recording a national tally of 134 confirmed cases in the country.
• Case 134 is a 22-year-old Bruneian student who returned from the United States of America via the United Kingdom on March 29 onboard Royal Brunei Airlines’ flight BI004, seated at 36G.
She had undergone self-isolation since her arrival in the country and did not show any signs of infection.
The health minister added that the recovered cases have been allowed to return home, which means 68 cases are currently under treatment at the National Isolation Centre (NIC).
Out of this figure, three cases are currently in a critical condition whereby one case requires the aid of a heart/lung machine (ECMO) and the remaining patients are in good condition.
To date, some 440 individuals are still in quarantine under the Infectious Disease Act (Chapter 204) while 1,898 have completed their quarantine.
A total of 7,566 laboratory tests have been conducted since January this year, leading to a ratio of 1 in every 57 residents have tested for COVID-19.
Laboratory tests and flattening the curve
The minister also said the number of laboratory tests conducted in the country has increased, reaching a maximum capacity of 1,000 tests per day.
Confirmed cases reported daily have also decline followed by an improving number of recovered patients.
“These are some indications that the outbreak in the country is well under control. However, citizens and residents must not be complacent because the pandemic is still fast spreading in other countries,” said the health minister.
To date, more than one million people have been infected with the disease and over 50,000 death reported worldwide.
“Although Brunei has succeeded in flattening the curve, our country is still under threat of imported virus,” the minister added.
An outbreak will only be declared over, the minister added, when there are no more cases reported in the country within four weeks or 28 days of the infection incubation period.
However, it was expected that the virus cannot be immediately eliminated considering the spread of the virus globally has yet to be controlled at this time.
“It is important for everyone to work together to control the spread of COVID-19 in our country in order for some restrictions to be reduced or lifted gradually,” said YB Dato Dr Hj Isham.
He further said that the restrictions can only be lessened after the health ministry and other agencies under the government of His Majesty the Sultan have examined and assessed the success of the outbreak containment.
The ministry of health (MoH) also clarified the calculation of days for self- isolation for those arriving in the country.
“As what was informed before, the period of self-isolation is 14 days from the day of arrival. However, the arrival day is termed as day 0 or not counted for,” said the minister.
Taking an example, for those arriving on March 20, the self-isolation will end on April 4 which is the 15th day after completing the 14-day period.
This is to ensure that the period of isolation is fully conducted, the minister added.
The minister also urged parents and guardians to cooperate and abide by the scheduled time to fetch their children back home from the respective isolation facilities.
For further information and the latest updates, members of the public can visit the MoH’s official website at www.moh.gov.bn or contact the Health Advice Line at 148 or through the web application healthinfo.gov.bn.
The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN