2020.02.06 16:27

Plane with infected passenger lands in Vilnius, coronavirus ruled out


A plane from Warsaw landed in Vilnius on Thursday with a suspected case of coronavirus, which was later ruled out.

Rolanda Lingienė, director of National Public Health Centre, confirmed on Thursday evening that the passenger is not infected with coronavirus. "The initial clinical symptoms led to believe" that the person was infected with coronavirus, she said.

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"The person didn't visit the People's Republic of China, and did not interact with [anyone who had] a confirmed case of coronavirus," said Lingienė.

The passenger is suspected to have an air-borne infectious disease, she added, but the doctors still need to confirm the exact diagnosis.

The person has been taken to the Center of Infectious Diseases of Santaros clinic , according to BNS.

"The passenger is in hospital, with doctors checking his symptoms, and they will probably take a sample to decide if he should be hospitalised or released. The health of [other] passengers has been checked and almost all of them have been released," Lina Businskaitė, spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health, told BNS.

Coronavirus scare

The plane landed at 16:10 and came from Warsaw, according to the airport's spokesman Marius Zelenius.

"It's true that a plane carrying a passenger with a potentially infectous disease has landed at the Vilnius airport," he said earlier on Thursday. "Health Emergency Situation Centre is already activated."

He added that officials from National Public Health Centre as well as medical personnel and "other services" are on their way to the airport.

The plane was diverted to a separate area in the airport and the passengers will not disembark until a decision is taken by the health officials.

The possibly infected person will be taken by an ambulance to Santaros clinic that is prepared to deal with such cases, according to Zelenius.

The passenger flew in from US via Warsaw

The potentially infected person flew in from the US via Warsaw, according to Algirdas Šešelgis, head of the Health Emergency Situation Centre and vice minister of health.

He would comment whether the individual is a LIthuanian citizen, and said coronavirus is highly unlikely.

"There is not even 'a smell' of coronavirus, but let's wait for the specialists' conclusion," Šešelgis told earlier on Thursday. "It will most likely be flu, [but] I don't know [and] let's wait for the doctors."

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