Coronavirus in Cyprus: South Cyprus begin track down on those who came in contact with doctor with virus

Greek Cypriot authorities are on the hunt for the contacts of a doctor at the Nicosia general hospital who was infected with the deadly coronavirus during a trip to Britain, the ministry confirmed on Monday.

The 64-year-old heart surgeon is one of the first two confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Cyprus. The other is a 25-year-old Cypriot from Limassol, reports Cyprus Mail.

The doctor returned from the United Kingdom on March 3 and was not tested upon his arrival, as Britain is not a high-risk country. It is reported he went back to work on March 4 even though he showed symptoms of the virus.

Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said it was ‘regrettable’ the man only reported to authorities on Sunday, March 8, after showing symptoms.

This does complicate efforts by the ministry on the tracing we need to do on the contacts he had over the past five days, he said.
The ministry will conduct tests [on his contacts] to determine if they have the virus. The process to track down the close contacts of the doctor, be they patients, colleagues, or family members has started, the ministry said in a statement issued later on Monday.
Ioannou said the entire hospital would not be quarantined but only the doctor’s specific section.

The ministry is also trying to track the doctor’s fellow passengers on the flight from the UK. A sample will be taken from the individuals for testing, and they will also be instructed to self-isolate.

The 25-year-old, who had recently travelled from northern Italy, had been in self-isolation after being tested at the airport since returning from Milan on February 26. He was re-examined after he started showing symptoms on March 5, and re-entered self-isolation.

Ioannou also said that both cases are displaying mild symptoms of the virus and they are currently in a good condition.

The cases are among the 42 people who were being tested for coronavirus on Monday by the Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics. Three national guardsmen were tested for the virus. All three were negative, but two army camps on in Paphos and one in Nicosia were on lockdown.

Source: Cyprus Mail.

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