Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday reiterated that Cambodians have not been infected by Covid-19. But despite this, he urged the public to remain vigilant and follow all precautionary measures laid out by the government and health authorities to combat the coronavirus.
“As Covid-19 spreads across the world, please remain alert and protect your health and that of your family by practising proper hygiene. Please wash your teeth, face, hands, feet, and body often with soap or disinfectant. Prevention is better than cure. No Cambodian has contracted Covid-19,” Hun Sen said in a Facebook post.
Ministry of Health spokesperson Or Vandine also said on Sunday that contrary to some social media posts, no Cambodian has ever tested positive for Covid-19.
“The Ministry of Health would like to announce that, as of March 1, we have not found a single Cambodian infected with Covid-19,” she said.
However, she said the ministry has investigated potential cases around the country and had dispatched officials to collect samples from patients and conduct tests for the coronavirus. All checks returned negative results, she said.
Institut Pasteur du Cambodge said that there have been 75 cases of people suspected of carrying the virus, but the tests all returned negative results. These cases were people that showed symptoms associated with the disease, included having a fever. Some of them had recently been to China.
The Department of Communicable Diseases urged action against Facebook users that share misinformation related to faintings or deaths linked to Covid-19.
In a Facebook post, Department of Communicable Diseases director Ly Sovann clarified that contagious diseases such as Covid-19 do not cause sudden fainting or death.
“The conditions that cause sudden fainting or death tend to be non-contagious such as heart attacks or short-term cerebral ischemia. Fainting can be caused by becoming inebriated or dehydrated from standing in the sun too long,” he said.
He said the novel coronavirus cannot be transmitted by air. Contagion can only occur through body fluids, including nasal fluid.
“Research has shown that three feet or about 0.9 metres is a safe distance if you are near a patient infected with the virus,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health announced on Friday that all passengers of the MS Westerdam had returned to their countries of origin. None of them had tested positive for the virus or showed any symptoms associated with Covid-19.