Outbreak Investigation of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) among Islamic Missionaries in Southern Thailand, April 2020
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From 30 Mar to 20 Apr 2020, an outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) occurred in Thung Yang Daeng District of Pattani Province in Southern Thailand. An outbreak investigation was conducted to identify the outbreak’s magnitude, epidemiologic characteristics, and source of infection. A descriptive study was conducted in which we reviewed investigation reports of all Real Time - Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) confirmed COVID-19 cases and identified active local transmission villages. A case was defined as a person living in one of the active local transmission villages with laboratory confirmation of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). A total of 27 laboratory-confirmed cases were identified from 471 individuals (overall attack rate 5.7%) who were deemed to be high-risk contacts. Among them, two cases were detected from the active case finding. The median age of the 27 cases was 46 years (Q1=28, Q3=58) and the male to female ratio was 1.07:1. The first imported case returned from religious gatherings at Markaz Yala, a place of worship in Yala Province. The analytic result showed that the group of religious contacts at Markaz Yala, local religious contacts, and household contacts of the confirmed cases, had a significantly higher risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection than other community members. Local quarantine for people returning from outbreak areas and religious gatherings, and for high-risk close contacts will be appropriate for the district context.
Keywords: Coronavirus Disease, COVID-19, Islamic missionaries, southern, Thailand
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