China claims 10.9 million COVID tests in Qingdao City all negative: Taiwan’s Health Minister says “impossible”

Chinese officials claimed yesterday that COVID-19 tests on 10.9 million people in Qingdao City, Shandong Province, had all returned negative results, but Taiwan’s Health Minister, Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), said today that such a result was impossible. Citywide tests for Qingdao City’s population of 11 million were ordered after a cluster infection of 13 people centered around a local hospital was discovered recently. The cluster was claimed to be China’s first case of locally transmitted COVID-19 in over two months. The

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Taiwan shows lowest economic impact due to COVID-19 among 38 countries analysed

An analysis of economic downturns in COVID-19 impacted countries showed that Taiwan had among the lowest death-rates, and showed the least economic impact among 38 countries for which the latest GDP figures were available. The analysis by Joe Hasell, published in Our World in Data, showed that Taiwan had suffered a GDP decline of only 0.6% in the second quarter of 2020 compared to the same quarter in the previous year. In comparing the death rates and economic downturns experienced,

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Health Minister explains problems of mass COVID screening as KMT Party threatens to undermine Taiwan’s anti-epidemic success

Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung urged municipal-level government officials to follow the instructions of the National Health Command Center after some influential members of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) supported a bypass of the national government, and attemted to instigate general screening for COVID-19 at county and city level. Chen, who also serves as commander of the Central Epidemic Control Center (CECC) warned that local governments must follow the instructions of the national health authorities. The health minister

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Taiwan rejected drug cocktail treatment from the start, and has recorded 6 deaths attributed to COVID-19

Researchers in Hong Kong claimed that COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms recovered more quickly when treated with a combination of three antiviral drugs if treated soon after symptoms appear in a paper published by British medical journal The Lancet, May 8, 2020. However, according to Chang Shan-Chwen ( 張上淳), coordinator of the expert advisory group of Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), the group had considered the treatment method in the initial stages of the outbreak, but rejected it due

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Three Navy crew test positive for COVID-19 after months at sea

Three navy crew members have tested positive for COVID-19 after departing Taiwan February 21, and stopping only at the coronavirus-free island of Palau more than one month ago. The three young sailors, all in their 20s served on board one of three ships to make the annual oceanic training voyage, returning to the Port of Kaohsiung April 9. This year’s voyage was shortened to 48 days due to the coronavirus situation preventing visits to some countries. Since the ships had

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Man spends 81 days in hospital with no symptoms of COVID-19

A Taiwanese businessman who was put into a negative pressure isolation ward in January ,after breaching quarantine on his return from Wuhan, China, then testing positive for COVID-19, was finally released today, Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) confirmed. The man, who is not identified in media reports, but described as in his fifties, returned to Taiwan from Wuhan in January. However, instead of self-quarantining at home as required by anti-epidemic regulations, he went out to nightclubs in Kaohsiung City.

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Prague thanks Taiwan for medical supplies: “Taiwan’s success inspiring”

The Mayor of Prague, Zdeněk Hřib thanked Taiwan for donating ventilators, saying that they will be used to save lives. Czech Parliament Senator Jiří Drahoš  joined Hřib in a video to thank the people of Taiwan. “Dear people of Taiwan,” Mayor Hřib, a qualified physician, said; “your success in your fight with coronavirus has been very inspiring for us here in Prague.” “I hope this situation will be over soon so that we can cooperate more in the future.” The message

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Why Taiwan hasn’t implemented universal COVID-19 screening: false positives would overwhelm medical resources

If universal screening for COVID-19 were implemented, people who tested positive, but who are not sick, would vastly overwhelm resources available for people who actually need them, according to experts at Tunghai University. SETN reports that The Department of Applied Physics at Tunghai University posted on Facebook that no matter how powerful the testing technology is, there will always be false positives, as well as false negatives. Statistics applied, even assuming the accuracy of the test method is so high

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WHO senior doctor pretends not to hear question about Taiwan, ends video call with Hong Kong reporter

Assistant director-general of the World Health Organization Bruce Aylward appeared to go deaf, or to have experienced technical difficulties when a Hong Kong reporter asked him a question about Taiwan, then rudely hung up when the reporter repeated the question. During an interview for RTHK’s weekly current affairs show, The Pulse, Yvonne Tong asked Aylward: “Will the WHO reconsider Taiwan’s membership?” Aylward’s eyes and mouth twitched with a slightly pained expression, then followed a long, awkward silence with Aylward staring

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In the midst of viral panic, everybody ignores the problem of false positives, and they call for more tests

To get a more complete picture of how widespread the virus is in the United States, “we’re going to need millions and millions and millions of tests,” said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in Bethesda, Md., during a CNN town hall on March 5, reported Science News. Yesterday, March 18, Taiwan reported a record daily number of “confirmed cases” of Covid-19 at 23, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 100. Eleven

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MOTC proposes NT$30 billion bailout fund, China Airlines issues NT$10 billion in bonds as aviation industry faces virus crisis

The Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) has proposed an NT$30 billion bailout loan package for Taiwan’s six airlines, but the plan has not yet been approved by the premier, according to Executive Yuan Spokesperson Kolas Yotaka. A previous bailout package was approved to the tune of NT$4.8 billion, but MOTC Minister Lin Chia-lung indicated recently that the figure may be raised to NT$30 billion because the aviation industry requires capital turnover. Today’s announcement comes on the same day that

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