Israel confirms first coronavirus case

Israel confirms first coronavirus case
  • Clock-gray 16:28
  • calendar-gray 21 February 2020

One of 11 Israeli travelers who returned to the country early Friday after being quarantined for the last two weeks on a cruise ship off Japan’s coast tested positive for coronavirus Friday, the Health Ministry said, marking the first case of the novel COVID-19 virus in the Jewish state, APA reports citing Times of Israel.

A plane carrying the passengers from Japan was brought to a remote area of Ben Gurion Airport just after 4 a.m., where the travelers were immediately put on vans to be taken to Sheba Medical Center, near Tel Aviv where they will spend the next 14 days in quarantine — hoping that will be be the end of a vacation spoiled by global fears over the spread of the pathogen.

As they arrived at the special, isolated hospital building, the passengers gave breath samples designed to determine whether they have the virus in their blood.

Results showed a positive result for one woman, and negative results for the other ten Israelis.

“An examination at the Health Ministry’s main laboratory found that one of the passengers tested positive,” the ministry said in a statement. “The lab is continuing to confirm the test results. The patient is in quarantine and under supervision and this is not an infection that occurred in Israel.”

All 11 had also been tested before departing Japan and all showed up as negative.


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