A foreign student in Saudi Arabia died of suicide on Saturday after he was placed in quarantine for a respiratory illness, Arab News reported.
The man jumped to his death from the window of his quarantined room at the King Fahd Hospital in Jeddah. The deceased was admitted to the local medical center after he was transferred by the Saudi Red Crescent Authority late on Friday, Jeddah's Health Department said in a statement.
"The resident was placed in a completely closed isolation room, according to the health requirements, but the resident removed the window's safety button and threw himself at 12:24 am. The student was announced dead at 3:30 am on Saturday," the department's statement read
The announcement only referred to the man's illness using the term "respiratory virus" and didn't expand on whether it was thought to be the current coronavirus (COVID-19). Though the official statement on the matter made no mention of the deceased patient's nationality, several local media outlets quoted unnamed authorities as saying the man was a Chinese national.
The patient was treated according to medical protocols applied for cases similar to his. He was quarantined as doctors waited for blood test results to confirm his diagnosis.
Results came out on Saturday morning, revealing that the man had tested negative for coronavirus; he had, unfortunately, ended his own life before receiving the news.
At the time of his death, the man had been in the kingdom for around eight months and was a student at King Abdulaziz University. An official investigation has now been launched into his suicide.
Saudi Arabia has yet to confirm any official case of coronavirus as local health authorities continue a vigilant process in a bid to prevent the fatal virus from spreading in the kingdom.
Cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Egypt and the UAE
Egypt reported its first case of the viral illness on Friday in a joint press release published by the country's Ministry of Health and Population and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The spokesman for the country's ministry, Khaled Megahed, explained that the infected person is a foreigner who tested positive for the virus despite not showing any symptoms. He was tested as part of Egypt's "contingency and prevention plan, which relies on the electronic registration and monitoring of individuals arriving from coronavirus-stricken countries."
The country continues to amp up efforts to combat the spread of the virus and has activated a "predictive electronic system to identify patients at high risk of contracting the novel coronavirus." Officials have also issued a warning against nose rub greetings to help prevent the spread of the virus.
Coronavirus death toll is skyrocketing in China
Though China has said the virus' infection rate has been declining in the past few days, the illness' death toll is climbing.
The virus has also spread to 28 countries and led to an extended quarantine of thousands of people on board more than two cruise ships worldwide.
These include the Diamond Princess cruise ship which has been docked in Japan's Yokohama for over 10 days. As of Sunday, 355 coronavirus cases have been confirmed among the total of 3,700 passengers and crew on board.