Brunei records two new COVID-19 cases

James Kon

Brunei Darussalam recorded two new COVID-19 cases yesterday bringing the total tally of confirmed cases to 141.

The new cases are friends of Case 139, who tested positive for the coronavirus on Wednesday. All three lived together in a dormitory.

These details were provided at a press conference yesterday, by Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Isham bin Haji Jaafar.

He said, “Case 140 is a male aged 46, while Case 141 is a male aged 31. Both are friends of Case 139 who was reported on Wednesday.

“These new cases were detected during a monitoring of the country’s citizens and residents, as well as foreign workers. Preliminary investigations have shown that all three cases – Cases 139, 140 and 141 – were most likely infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus in March 2020 and have resided at the same place.

“At present, all three do not show any symptoms of infection.”

Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Isham bin Haji Jaafar during the press conference. PHOTO: RAHWANI ZAHARI

He added, “Further investigation is still ongoing, to identify the cause of infection and to trace the contacts of the cases. So far, 59 of their contacts have undergone tests for COVID-19. Twenty tested negative and the rest are still awaiting their results.”

The minister also advised the public not to panic, while emphasising the importance of continued vigilance and preventive measures such as physical distancing, avoiding mass gatherings and only leaving home when necessary.

As there were no recovered cases yesterday, the number of recovered patients remains at 131. This brings the number of active cases still being treated at the National Isolation Centre (NIC) to nine.

Two of the cases at the NIC are still in critical condition, with one requiring a heart-lung machine (ECMO) and respiratory assistance, while the other is receiving respiratory assistance. Meanwhile, the rest are in a stable condition.

At present, 157 individuals are undergoing quarantine in accordance to the Infectious Diseases Act (Chapter 204), while 2,551 have completed their quarantine.

A total of 1,892 individuals have completed their period of self-isolation since March 20, when the mandatory 14-day duration was introduced for arrivals into the country. Currently, 273 individuals are undergoing mandatory self-isolation in monitoring facilities assigned by
the government.

In the past 24 hours, 184 samples were tested for the SARS-CoV2 virus, bringing total number of laboratory tests conducted since January 2020 to 14,938.

The public can obtain information by visiting the Ministry of Health (MoH)’s official website at www.moh.gov.bn, or by contacting the Health Advice Line at 148, or through the web application at healthinfo.gov.bn.