Iranian state media has reported that a 103-year-old woman has been cured of deadly coronavirus infection in the Islamic Republic despite the significant evidence that elderly people are most vulnerable to the pathogen. The woman had been hospitalised in the central city of Semnan for at least seven days, and reportedly the head of the hospital, Navid Danayi has said that she was “discharged after making a complete recovery”.
In a country which is one of the most hard-hit of COVID-19 infections after China, the 103-year-old woman was also the second elderly patient who has been fully cured of the disease. While to total coronavirus cases in Iran have reached over 16,000, and has claimed at least 988 lives as of March 18, a 91-year-old man from Kerman, in the southeast of Iran also survived after contracting COVID-19.
According to an international news agency, the man was recovered on March 16 after being sick for three days despite having pre-existing medical conditions including high blood pressure and asthma. However, the reports have not mentioned how both the elderly patients of the fatal virus were treated. Even though the World Health Organisation has stated that the fatality rate of the novel virus is 3.4 per cent, it has also derived that the elderly people are most vulnerable to the disease which first originated in the Chinese province of Wuhan. The fatality rate for older people, above the age of 80 is 21.9 per cent.
Meanwhile, the WHO has also said that the best way to combat the unprecedented outbreak of deadly coronavirus for all countries is to ramp up their testing programs. The WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a conference in Geneva that the “simple message” he has for all countries is “test, test, test”. He further added that the countries will remain unsuccessful to tackle the pandemic if they fail to test all suspected cases and remain “blindfolded”.
WHO chief said, “But the most effective way to prevent infections and save lives is breaking the chains of transmission. And to do that, you must test and isolate. You cannot fight a fire blindfolded.
He added, "And we cannot stop this pandemic if we don’t know who is infected. We have a simple message for all countries: test, test, test. Test every suspected case.”