Third coronavirus case confirmed in Estonia

Health Board employee at the Port of Tallinn.
Health Board employee at the Port of Tallinn. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The third COVID-19 coronavirus case has been confirmed in Estonia, the Health Board (Terviseamet) says.

The individual is a resident of Tallinn who had been on the same flight from Bergamo, Italy, to Riga, Latvia, on Saturday, as the second confirmed case.

The victim had traveled from Riga by private car to Tallinn, and had experienced fever symptoms. They had also reportedly complained of bone and joint pain.

The Health Board made its announcement following the analysis of 43 samples.

The individual is currently quarantined at home, and being monitored by the Health Board.

The Health Board also says that while the two latest cases had been on the same flight, this need not mean the two infections are related; the board is to conduct further epidemiological analysis to clarify this.

The second case, reported on Tuesday, remained home after returning from their trip and had been wearing a face mask and used disinfectant while washing their hands even before the symptoms manifested themselves, it is reported. Those close to the second coronavirus individual are also staying at home.

The announcement brings the total of confirmed cases in Estonia to three; the first was reported late last week.

Tartu ambulance team taking samples

Two-member ambulance teams in both Tallinn and now Tartu are taking samples from those self-quarantining at home. The Tartu team is covering the entire South Estonia region.

The latest positive case was identified Wednesday, and had been sampled by the Tartu ambulance team, and taken to the Health Board offices for testing on the morning of March 3.

Returnees from at-risk zones should stay home for 14 days

Anyone with a reasonable suspicion that they may have picked up coronavirus, meaning those who have been in a risk area over the past 14 days and/or have symptoms specific to the illness, should call their family doctor or the family doctor's advice line on 1220. The emergency number, 112, should only be called in the event of a deterioration in health.

In addition to avoiding close contact with people who have symptoms of respiratory illness, adherence to hygiene rules, which include proper and constant washing of hands, helps prevent the spread of infectious diseases, which include flu viruses across Estonia.

The primary at-risk areas at the time of writing are Italy, with over 3,000 confirmed cases, the People's Republic of China (over 80,000), South Korea (close to 6,000) and Iran (just under 3,000). Other locations mentioned in the media include Japan and Singapore, with Spain, France and Germany having experienced over 200 confirmed cases to date.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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