VIENTIANE — Laos has detected the first two confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country, the Lao Health Ministry officials told a press conference Tuesday afternoon.
According to Deputy Health Minister Phouthone Moungpak, the two confirmed cases, both Lao nationals, are likely to be imported.
The infected female tourist guide went to Vangvieng, Luang Prabang in northern Laos and Cambodia before showing COVID-19 flu-like symptoms.
The other infected male hotel staff is supposed to be infected in Thailand while receiving a training course there.
Both of them are treated in the designated hospital, the Mittaphab Hospital (150 Hospital), in Vientiane.
They are not serious cases and the treatment is going well, said the deputy minister, adding their close contacts have been quarantined.
Free testing for COVID-19 cases
Director-General of the Department of Communicable Disease Control, Rattanaxay Phetsouvanh, said the public, including foreign nationals in Laos, suspected by medical personnel of carrying COVID-19 will be tested free of charge.
If a doctor determines a patient has symptoms matching COVID-19 or travel history to risky locations, then they can be referred to receive testing free of charge.
Individuals insisting on being tested without an official referral from a doctor will have to pay, local daily Vientiane Times reported on Tuesday.
Lao Ministry of Health has set up COVID-19 coordination units at hospitals nationwide to help monitor and prevent the spread of the virus. — XINHUA