CORONAVIRUS/Taiwan sees 104 local COVID-19 cases, 40 in New Taipei
Taipei, April 1 (CNA) Taiwan on Friday recorded 104 locally-transmitted COVID-19 cases, from nine cities and counties across the country with the highest number in New Taipei, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).
The northern Taiwanese city recorded 40 domestic cases, followed by 20 each in Taoyuan and Keelung cities, and 12 in Taipei, the CECC said.
The confirmed number of locally-transmitted cases on Friday set a new daily high for the year, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said at a press briefing.
Cases in New Taipei
In New Taipei, the cluster linked to an apartment building in Zhonghe District saw 23 new COVID-19 cases, of which 18 individuals tested positive for the disease at local COVID-19 testing stations, Chen said.
Not only is the Zhonghe cluster linked to the one in Taitung County, the health minister said genome sequencing indicates that both clusters could also be connected to the recent infections found at a dance studio in Taoyuan and a pet shop in Changhua.
Meanwhile, the Keelung cluster added 21 more COVID-19 cases to total 115 on Friday, he said.
The northern port city announced Wednesday that mass testing for COVID-19 is expected to be conducted over a week-long period, although the timeline for the rollout has not yet been decided, according to the CECC.
If carried out, this will hopefully enable the authorities to identify other potential sources of transmission, Chen said on Friday.
Elsewhere, Taoyuan reported 20 new COVID-19 cases involving employees at a small e-commerce business and their family members, while Hualien saw six new cases involving three medical workers at Tzu Chi Hospital and three individuals who visited there recently.
The other new domestic cases on Friday were reported in Taichung, Hsinchu County and Kaohsiung.
According to the CECC, there are now 20 local transmission chains with unknown infection sources.
The current situation in Taiwan has not yet reached the level it did in May last year when the country saw a record daily high of over 700 COVID-19 cases, Chen said, adding that people should not panic, but remain cautious and get vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible.
Asked if people should adjust their mindset to coexisting with the virus, the health minister again called on the public not to be afraid as the COVID-19 infection rate in Taiwan is currently only at around 1 percent, and therefore has not yet reached the point where coexistence needs to be considered.
According to Ministry of Education statistics on Friday, a total of 27 schools nationwide have so far have either fully or partially suspended classes due to COVID-19.
Among them, there is one preschool, 13 elementary schools, three junior high schools, five high schools, and five universities or colleges.
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