February 29, 2020 / 8:42 PM / a month ago

Brazil confirms second case of new coronavirus - Health Ministry

Travellers wearing protective face masks as a precautionary measure arrive on a flight from Italy, after the second case of coronavirus in Sao Paulo was confirmed, at Guarulhos International Airport in Guarulhos, Sao Paulo state, Brazil, February 29, 2020. REUTERS/Amanda Perobelli

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazil’s Health Ministry on Saturday confirmed the country’s second case of the fast-spreading new coronavirus, diagnosed in a 32-year-old patient in São Paulo who had recently visited Italy and arrived on Thursday.

The man returned to São Paulo accompanied by his wife and wore a mask during the flight from Milan, according to additional information on the case released by the ministry after a brief statement earlier.

The man exhibited the first symptoms on the day he arrived and sought medical attention on Friday, the statement said. He was in stable condition and was sent home to recover after receiving treatment at the same hospital that handled Brazil’s first case of the new coronavirus.

His wife is asymptomatic, the ministry added. Both are in isolation at home.

There was no evidence that the virus was circulating nationwide, the health ministry statement said.

Brazil’s first case of the novel coronavirus was confirmed on Wednesday, during the South American country’s Carnival holiday, a peak time for domestic travel.

The first confirmed case was a 61-year-old man in São Paulo who also had returned recently from Italy and is recovering at home.

There are 85,403 confirmed cases globally, the Brazilian health ministry said on Saturday, citing data from the World Health Organization. The epidemic, which began in China, has killed almost 3,000 people worldwide, the ministry said.

Reporting by Lisandra Paraguassu,; Writing by Ana Mano; Editing by Rosalba O'Brien and Jonathan Oatis

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