Malta has its first three confirmed locally transmitted cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Superintendent of Public Health Charmaine Gauci has confirmed.
With nine new cases, this represents the largest increase ever since the first patient was confirmed to have COVID-19 a little over a week ago.
All three of the locally transmitted cases are healthcare workers. Two worked in close contact with the health care worker who was confirmed to have the virus yesterday.
The third could have two different sources, she lives with an Italian man who recently went abroad, while she also had contact with the aforementioned health care worker
Gauci said their contact with patients was minimal.
Medical workers who were in contact with them are being sent home due to concerns within the hospital.
The total number of confirmed cases is now up to 30. There have been two recoveries.
Until yesterday, all of the cases had been imported into Malta from other countries, with each patient showing symptoms soon after returning from abroad.
However, some of them did not follow quarantine measures, with many returning from countries which were not placed on the high-risk area list. The news confirms fears that the virus could have already started to spread among the public.
Two people have so far recovered from the virus. However, the pair will remain under quarantine amid revelations that the virus can re-infect survivors. All of those who have contracted the virus are in good condition.
If you believe you are suffering from the coronavirus, follow the following guidelines:
Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people, as you would with the flu.
Do not go to Mater Dei, the emergency department, health centres, private clinics, or pharmacies. Stay home and call the public health authority’s helpline 111.
If you are returning from any country, do not break self-quarantine rules or you will be subject to a 1000 euro fine.
You can call +356 21324086 for advice.
Avoid calling 112 unless it is a real emergency. That emergency line is crucial in saving lives in peril, and having it be flooded with calls on the coronavirus could have fatal consequences.