Taiwan reports record 206 local COVID cases – Apple Daily

Taiwan reported a record 206 local cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, as a recent outbreak struck communities in the island’s northern region.

It was the fourth day in a row that Taiwan, which had been hailed for its success in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, had reported an increase in new infections.

Of Sunday’s cases, 90 were men and 116 were women. Taipei, the island’s capital, and its neighboring city of New Taipei in northern Taiwan accounted for 97 and 89 cases, respectively.

Other northern cities, including Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Yilan, and Keelung, each saw two to three cases while the rest were scattered across the central cities of Taichung and Changhua.

The peak in new infections was too steep and health officials were still trying to trace the sources of 48 cases, Health and Welfare Minister Chen Shih-chung said.

The island’s central epidemic control center on Sunday stepped up testing for medical staff and urged hospitals to postpone elective surgeries and exams until the risk of infection has decreased.

After 180 new local cases were reported on Saturday, authorities announced a ban on indoor social gatherings of more than five people and outdoor gatherings of more than 10 people in and around Taipei.

Officials would introduce flexible working hours for officials in those regions between May 17 and May 28 to reduce the risk of infection while commuting. Certain secondary classes would also be suspended.

Long lines were seen outside Taipei supermarkets on Saturday as consumers stocked up on food, water and other essentials. But the streets of the capital turned quiet in the evening after Mayor Ko Wen-je urged residents to stay at home and avoid unnecessary travel.

The number of commuters on the Taipei metro network fell to 590,000 on Saturday, from 1.59 million a week earlier.

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen posted a photo of an empty Taipei street on her Facebook page and said it was part of the island’s collective efforts to fight the pandemic.

Some Japanese netizens have sent their best wishes to Taiwan, saying they hope the island will stop the epidemic soon. They also noted that most Taiwanese residents were vigilant about the risks of COVID-19 and that the Tsai administration had taken timely response measures.

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