Iceland has reportedly confirmed its first case of the novel coronavirus after a man in his 40s tested positive for the COVID-19 on February 28. The patient returned from a tour to northern Italy to the subarctic region as per reports. The man was quarantined at the National University Hospital of Iceland at around 1pm to curb the further spread of the disease due to transmission, confirmed Iceland's Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management in media reports.
The government agency said in a statement that the man who contracted the strain of the novel coronavirus was in a better health condition, although he showed symptoms of the COVID-19. It said that the man had recently visited Italy and had been outside the designated risk areas, and yet he tested positive for the disease.
The authorities further added that an investigation was ongoing to track the contacts and the patient’s pathway to detect the people exposed to him. As a preventive measure to stem the contagion, they would be isolated and monitored by the health officials.
According to the reports, the coordination center of the Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management in Skógarhlíð, Reykjavík had enabled planning and containment efforts days ahead in view of the epidemic of the coronavirus in the countries worldwide.
Rögnvaldur Ólafsson, the assistant chief constable reportedly said that the purpose of the coordination center was mainly a preventive measure to educate and coordinate the reactions on the coronavirus should the country face the epidemic situation. He said that Iceland was drafting contingency plans and was calling meetings to discuss the COVID-19 outbreak and authorities were focusing to lay the groundwork.
Rögnvaldur further explained that there would be an emphasis on monitoring the outbreak and measures to combat the spread via human-to-human transmission. The role of the Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management would be preparedness to ensure the facilities were made available and the hospital infrastructures were well maintained to accommodate the coronavirus patients.