Coronavirus: Hungarian cruise ship employee tests positive

K EPA20200214042
2020.02.24. 15:52

Tamás Menczer, the international spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Monday afternoon that Japanese authorities, one of the three Hungarians working on the formerly quarantined cruise ship Diamond Princess tested positive for COVID-19.

There were three Hungarian citizens working on the cruise ship Princess Diamond that was quarantined off the coast of Japan: a pair of siblings working as musicians and a waiter. It is unsure which one of them tested positive for the novel coronavirus, however, Menczer said that the infected Hungarian is feeling fine and has no symptoms, and will be transported either to a hospital or an observation centre in Japan within two or three days where medical staff will be running regular tests.

The other two Hungarians tested negative and show no symptoms, the MFA is keeping in touch with all three Hungarians who served on the Princess Diamond. Menczer reminded that the Diamond Princess was placed under lockdown on 5 February, the quarantine ended on 19 February and all passengers left the ship by the 22nd, however, most of the staff remained on the cruise ship.

Previously, at another press conference on Monday morning, the Hungarian government's operative group told the press that they have no knowledge of any cases of the coronavirus in Hungary and announced that due to the outbreak in Italy, the disease protocol will be updated to reflect the recent developments. The Chief Medical Officer advised against travelling to Northern Italy, adding that travelling to other regions of the country should be preceded by "careful consideration and research." They also announced that security officials will be taking the temperatures of travellers arriving at Hungarian airports from Northern Italy.

The press conference in the morning was called together after fifteen people were quarantined in the Central Hospital of Southern Pest on Sunday after they returned from a school trip near the quarantined areas of Italy - eleven students, two teachers, and the two drivers will be isolated at the hospital for the next two weeks, but they are well and show no symptoms. Last week, three Hungarian citizens travelling on the coronavirus-affected cruise ship MS Westerdam were quarantined after their return to Hungary. The seven Hungarians evacuated from China's Hubei province earlier were already released from isolation on 16 February.

(Cover: MTI / EPA)

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