An Israeli woman on a cruise ship off Japanese coast hit by coronavirus is believed to be suffering from fever and flu like symptoms, sources told Ynet on Monday. Her diagnosis is not yet known.
Japan's health ministry said earlier at least 65 more people on the Diamond Princess liner have tested positive for a new virus, bringing the total of those infected to 135. At least 15 Israelis are believed to be among 3,600 people still in a 14-day quarantine on board the ship.
Health ministry officials said Monday they are double checking the results and could not immediately release the exact figure. They said further details are under way. Health officials previously said 70 people had the virus among the 3,711 passengers and crew on the ship, quarantined in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo.
One of the Israelis quarantined on the cruise liner, Lena Samoylov, said the passengers have only an hour to go outside, with the rest of the time being spent in their cabins in isolation.
"We are trying not to panic,” she told Ynet on Sunday. “Today we were told that there are two more [coronavirus] patients,” she added.
“It is stressful because we don’t know if these people [the sick] contracted the virus before boarding the ship or after boarding it."
"Lots of the passengers now are getting a bit of cabin fever," British passenger David Able said in a video posted on Facebook. "Depression is starting to set in."
Another said he hoped assurances about the effectiveness of quarantine and ventilation on board would prove true."I will get nervous if we pass 200," said the 43-year-old Hong Kong resident quarantined on the boat with his wife, child and several others of his family. Hoping best for those taken to hospital. At least two report back to us on Facebook that they are symptom free," said the man, who declined to be identified.
Five of the six new cases announced Sunday aboard the ship are crew assigned to restaurants, bars or housekeeping, according to Japan's health minister, Katsunobu Kato. Testing every person aboard would require them all to remain on the ship until results are available.
Japanese health authorities are scrambling to deliver medicine requested by more than 600 passengers.
"We are doing the utmost to keep everyone in good health," Kato said.
Rise in China
China reported a rise in new virus cases on Monday, possibly denting optimism disease control measures that have isolated major cities might be working, while the government promised billions of dollars in loans to companies involved in fighting the increasingly costly outbreak.
The mainland death toll rose by 97 to 908. Two more fatalities were reported outside the country.
Another 3,062 cases were reported in China over the 24 hours through midnight Sunday. That was up 15% from Saturday and broke a string of daily declines. A government spokesman had said Sunday those declines showed containment measures were working.
Meanwhile, the mother of a physician who died last week in Wuhan, the city at the center of the outbreak, said she wants an explanation from authorities who reprimanded her son for warning about the virus.
The death of Li Wenliang, 34, prompted an outpouring of public anger. Some postings left on his microblog account said officials should face consequences for mistreating Li. "We won't give up if they don't give us an explanation," said Lu Shuyun in the video distributed by Pear Video, an online broadcast platform.
The video shows flowers in her home with a note that says, "Hero is immortal. Thank you."
China has built two hospitals for virus patients in Wuhan and sent thousands of extra doctors, nurses and other health care workers to the city of 11 million people. Most access to Wuhan was suspended Jan. 23 and restrictions were expanded since then ave spread to cities with a total of 60 million people.
The fatality toll has passed the 774 people believed to have died in the 2002-03 epidemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome, another viral outbreak that originated in China. The total of 40,171 confirmed cases of the new virus vastly exceeds the 8,098 sickened by SARS.
Outside mainland China
More than 360 cases have been confirmed outside mainland China.
On Monday, Hong Kong reported seven more coronavirus cases, raising its total to 36.
A day earlier, Hong Kong released 3,600 people quarantined aboard the cruise ship Dream World after tests of the crew found no infections. The ship was isolated after previous passengers were diagnosed with the virus.
Hong Kong has shut all but two of its land and sea border points to the mainland. On Saturday, it started enforcing a 14-day quarantine on arrivals from mainland China.
Malaysia confirmed its 18th case in a man who works in Macau, a Chinese territory adjacent to Hong Hong, and visited the mainland before going to Malaysia on Feb. 1. The man was first diagnosed with SARS before testing positive for the new virus.
First published: 09:03, 02.10.20