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Friday, 14 February 2020 22:47

Japanese man diagnosed with coronavirus after visiting Hawaii

Written by Reuters
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(Reuters) - Hawaii health authorities began a search on Friday for anyone who may have had close contact with a Japanese tourist who fell ill on the island of Oahu and tested positive for a new coronavirus soon after returning to his home country.

The case came to public attention at a Honolulu news conference by Governor David Ige and senior state health officials, who said the man in question is believed to have become infected in Japan before embarking on his trip, or while en route to Hawaii.

That assumption is based on the 14-day incubation period of the virus, and the fact that the man became symptomatic after less than a week in Hawaii, the state health officials said.

The patient and his wife visited the island of Maui from Jan. 28 to Feb. 3, then traveled to Oahu, where they stayed until flying on Feb. 7 back to their home in the Aichi Prefecture of central Japan, the officials said.

The man had exhibited no sign of illness until reaching Oahu, where he first developed cold-like respiratory symptoms but no fever, the state’s health direct, Dr Bruce Anderson, told reporters.

Once back in Japan, he became more seriously ill and was tested for the coronavirus after going to a hospital, Anderson said.

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