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Covid-19: Health authorities urge people to regularly clean surfaces of commonly used items, including phones

ANI | Updated: Feb 13, 2020 17:41 IST

Singapore, Feb 13 (ANI): Health authorities here have urged the people to regularly clean surfaces of commonly used items, including phones.
During a news conference on Wednesday, the Ministry of Health's director of medical services Kenneth Mak advised people to ensure that they clean the surfaces of their phones, stressing that the virus is spread by droplets and contamination of surfaces, according to Channel NewsAsia.
He added that there is currently no established evidence that the deadly virus which has claimed at least 1300 deaths and infected more than 60,000 others so far spreads in the air.
Mak also said that there have been messages "with good intentions" circulating among the public to encourage good practices, but reiterated that hand-washing is the "single best defence" against community spread.
"The best form of advice I can give you to defend yourself is, in fact, washing your hands regularly and frequently with soap and water, and also to be mindful of the things that you commonly touch," he said.
Those who are sick should see a doctor as soon as possible, he said, adding that patients should not go to multiple doctors as this could make it difficult to establish if they have been sick for prolonged periods of time.
Meanwhile, TODAYOnline, a Singapore-based English-language digital news provider, in one of its report, has stated that out of the 50 patients who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus Covid-19 in Singapore so far, more than a handful had visited a doctor twice or thrice before it was confirmed that they were infected by the virus.
The initial symptoms of the Covid-19 coronavirus are similar to flu or the common cold, said Associate Professor Hsu Li Yang, and that is why general practitioners are sometimes not able to identify patients who are suspected of having the virus on their first visit to the clinic.
This is the reason why some patients receive a diagnosis after one visit to the clinic while others require multiple visits before testing positive for the virus, the online daily noted.
As the virus may not be easily detected in some infected patients early in the course of the disease, a second sample for testing taken on a different day or at a different time would help to reduce the risk of a false-negative result, said Prof Hsu.
In situations where a patient is a high suspect case and his test comes back negative, Dr Leong said he should go to see the doctor again to look for an alternative diagnosis.
Till Wednesday, six more patients were discharged from the hospital, bringing the number of people who recovered to 15. Thirty-five cases remain in hospital, including eight in the Intensive Care Unit.
The coronavirus originated from a seafood market in city of Wuhan, the capital of central Chinese province of Hubei, last December. (ANI)