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Coronavirus Tally Increases to 37; Ministry Says Most Are Mild Cases

People wearing mask buys medicines at a pharmacy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia amid corona outbreak on March 17, 2020. (Malis Tum/VOA Khmer)

The Cambodian Health Ministry reported two new cases of the coronavirus Wednesday night, again from individuals linked to a religious conference held in Malaysia earlier this month.

The two new cases were reported from Tbong Khmum province, with the two men now part of at least 20 people who have returned or been in contact with people who returned from a religious meeting in Kuala Lumpur earlier this month.

Regional media reports show the meeting has seemingly been the source of hundreds of positive cases across Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand and Brunei.

Or Vandine, a Health Ministry spokesperson, said that most of the cases in Cambodia were mild and patients were in relatively good health, especially those below the age of 40.

“We still keep an eye on them, but so far they show no signs that we should worry. Most of their health parameters are still normal.”

The first case of a Cambodian national testing positive was in Siem Reap, nearly two weeks ago, with Kros Sarat, director of Siem Reap Heath Department, said the man was in good health but was still testing positive for the virus.

“He is normal even though his tests are still positive. The number of virus in his tests are decreasing,” the health director said.

One of the men who returned from the religious meeting in Malaysia and tested positive, said that he had none of the expected COVID-19 symptoms. He said he was in quarantine but had not required any medication so far.

“There is nothing different. But I don’t have any of those [symptoms]. I am fine,” said the man, whose identity has not been revealed to protect his privacy.