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Jakarta Post

Family barred from visiting suspected COVID-19 patient in Maluku

  • Belseran Christ

    The Jakarta Post

Ambon   /   Sat, February 15, 2020   /   05:37 pm
Family barred from visiting suspected COVID-19 patient in Maluku Medical workers wheel a "patient" to a special isolation ward during a drill on Jan. 30, 2020 at Dr. Kariadi Central General Hospital (RSUP) in Semarang, Central Java, Thursday (1/30/2020). (Antara/Aji Styawan)

The family of the 19-year-old student with suspected coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has been prevented from visiting the patient at Magretty Saumlaki Regional General Hospital in Tanimbar Islands regency, Maluku, which has placed the student in isolation.

The student from Sifnana village, identified only as BN, was placed in the recommended 14-day isolation from Wednesday, when DN was admitted complaining of a fever and difficulty breathing after returning from Malaysia on Feb. 7.

The symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, dry cough and shortness of breath.

Read also: University student becomes first suspected case of coronavirus in Maluku 

“Starting today, we have put the patient in full quarantine. Therefore, contact with relatives is prohibited,” Tanimbar Islands Health Agency head Edwin Tomasoa told The Jakarta Post on Saturday, adding that he had suggested that the family check the BN's condition by phone or WhatsApp.

Edwin said the hospital was following the Health Ministry's standard operating procedure in managing suspected COVID-19 cases, and that the medical workers assigned to the patient had been equipped with special masks.

“Meanwhile, other hospital staff are still using the regular surgical masks provided by the Maluku Health Agency. More special masks for hospital staff might arrive soon,” he added.

BN, who is studying international relations, arrived in Ambon on Feb. 7 in poor health following a visit to Malaysia, which had at least 19 confirmed coronavirus cases at the time of publishing.

Read also: Health Ministry maintains it follows WHO procedures to test for coronavirus

Magretty Saumlaki hospital director Fulfully Nuniary said earlier on Thursday that a physical examination showed that the patient was in stable condition and had not exhibited any additional symptoms.

Indonesia has no confirmed cases of COVID-19 to date. (dpk)