Minister of Health Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Isham Haji Jaafar during a press conference at the Ministry of Health. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

Seven more recovered coronavirus patients have tested positive again after being discharged from the National Isolation Centre, the Minister of Health announced.

Speaking during a press conference, Health Minister, Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Md Isham Hj Jaafar said that all of the patients have been readmitted to the National Isolation Centre (NIC) for further investigation.

“In addition, their immediate family contacts are also required to undergo laboratory testing and quarantine for 14 days,” explained the minister, adding that the action was taken as a precautionary measure while further investigation is conducted and more information on the infection is obtained.

This latest COVID-19 development was the result of the newly implemented policy requiring recovered individuals to undergo 14 days of isolation at their homes after being discharged in order for the ministry to conduct follow-up examinations.

“Based on the surveillance conducted, another seven recovered cases have tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which brings the total to eight cases,” he continued.

The scenario in which patients who have recovered tested positive for the second time, though unfortunate, according to the minister, it has been par for the course in several other countries such as China, Korea, Thailand and Malaysia.

“As we already know, the SARS-CoV-2 virus is a new virus that was only discovered in early January of this year where much remains to be known about the infection,” he pointed out.

He added that the ministry is currently in cooperation with several countries in the region to better understand the profile and features of the infection; its method of infection, how long the virus can last in the human body and whether a person recovered individual can be reinfected.

zero cases, one recovery

The sultanate continues its no new cases reported streak, as the minister announced no new cases of COVID-19 infection in the country, leading the national tally of COVID-19 cases to remain at 136.

One more individual has also been reported to have recovered from the infection, and was allowed to return home, bringing the total number of people recovered so far to 107.

Minister of Health, Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Awang Mohd Isham Haji Jaafar and Minister of Religous Affairs, Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Haji Othman during a press conference at the Ministry of Health. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

There are 28 active cases still being treated at the NIC, this figure however does not include the eight patients that have been readmitted. Of the 28, two are still in critical condition and both cases require heart/lung machine (ECMO) and respiratory assistance.

At this time, a total of 112 individuals are currently undergoing quarantine according to the Infectious Diseases Act (Chapter 204), while 2,369 individuals have completed their quarantine.

Additionally, as of today a total of 1,451 individuals have ended their mandatory self-isolation period in the monitoring centres provided by the government upon returning to the country after travelling internationally.

Meanwhile, in the past 24 hours, a total of 283 samples have been tested for the virus SARS-CoV-2 that brings the total amount of laboratory tests conducted since January 2020 to 10,167 tests.

For further information and latest developments, visit MoH’s website at www.moh.gov.bn or call its 24-hour Health Advice Line 148 or through the web platform healthinfo.gov.bn.

Alternatively, members of the public can also get the latest information on the COVID-19 situation in Brunei through the GOV.BN Official channel on Telegram at https://t.me/govbnofficial.

Minister of Religous Affairs, Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Haji Othman during a press conference at the Ministry of Health. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

Mosque closures to extend until April 20

Sharing the session was Minister of Religious Affairs, Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Hj Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Hj Othman.

During the press conference, the minister announced that mosque closures that were slated to end today will be extended for another week until April 20.

He said that following the State Mufti’s fatwa and the advice of the Ministry of Health, the Islamic Religious Council viewed that even though the COVID-19 situation in the sultanate is under control, there still lies a threat of infection.

The religious affairs minister then reminded the public of importance of continuing to adhere to the measures and guidelines set by the government in curbing the COVID-19 outbreak affecting the nation.

A view of the Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Mosque at the capital. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

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