The Jakarta Post
A resident of Banyuasin regency, South Sumatra, has been put in the quarantine room of Mohammad Hosein General Hospital (RSMH) in the provincial capital of Palembang for showing symptoms of pneumonia.
The hospital gave an assurance that the patient in question did not contract the novel coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 disease. However, it stopped short of making an official diagnosis, as it was waiting for a test result.
“Our initial diagnosis [of the patient] is still common pneumonia. We cannot determine whether the patient is COVID-19-positive yet, as we are still waiting for the laboratory result, which is predicted to come in two days,” RSMH acting president director Zubaedah said on Tuesday.
The patient traveled to Malaysia, which had 22 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Tuesday, from Feb. 11 to 15.
Two days after returning from Malaysia, he was admitted to RK Charitas hospital before being transferred to RSMH.
Doctors at RSMH found the patient’s body temperature was below average. However, his medical record showed he had experienced a high fever.
The hospital’s head of the emerging infectious diseases team, Zen Ahmad, said the hospital had experience in treating lung infections, including pneumonia. Unlike COVID-19, the common form of pneumonia is caused by bacterial infection. Patients with acute respiratory infection are normally treated in the hospital’s intensive care unit.
“The patient had shown symptoms of shortness of breath before he was admitted. As of now, we can definitively say that the patient doesn’t fulfill the criteria of [being infected with] the coronavirus,” Zen said.
“Once the result comes out as negative, he will undergo the usual treatment,” Zen said.
South Sumatra Health Agency surveillance department head Yusri said his office had been observing 31 people who came in through Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II International Airport, Palembang, since Jan. 31.
They were placed in quarantine for showing symptoms of the virus. After 14 days, they were all declared at least relatively stable.
“As of today, none of them tested positive for COVID-19, although some of them had suffered from the common cold. Eleven of the 31 people put under our observation have been declared safe, while the remaining 20 are still being observed,” Yusri said. (dpk)