British coronavirus cruise couple say hospital is 'best place'

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David Abel and his wifeImage source, PA Media
Image caption,
Sally and David Abel have told their son they have tested positive for the virus

A British couple diagnosed with coronavirus on board a cruise ship in Japan have posted pictures from their hospital beds, saying they are "in the best place".

David and Sally Abel, from Northamptonshire, were transferred from the Diamond Princess, which has been quarantined near Yokohama.

Mr Abel said following treatment, they will need to test clear three times.

About 70 Britons from the ship are due to be flown home on Friday.

The couple spoke to the media regularly while on board the quarantined ship, however, earlier this week Mr Abel announced they had both tested positive for the virus.

Now in hospital, Mr Abel said on his Facebook page: "We both contracted a cold (unaware of) and it has not yet turned into pneumonia. (we do have coronavirus).

"Outside the hospital I came over a bit weird and nearly passed out. Every pore on my body opened and I was wheelchaired to our room."

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
David Abel and his wife tested positive for coronavirus while on board the cruise ship
Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
The couple will need to test clear of the virus three times before they can leave the hospital

Describing the hospital as "a lovely place", he added: "We are both in the best place. They do know what they are doing."

Mr Abel said the couple were in beds in the same room, and were preparing for "the big tests [to] commence - chest X-rays, ECG, chest scan, urine [and] more".

He added he and his wife were "thinking of all the Brits flying to the UK tomorrow".

Image source, Reuters
Image caption,
At least 621 people on the ship are infected

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said on Wednesday the Britons repatriated from the Diamond Princess will be quarantined for 14 days at Arrowe Park Hospital on the Wirral on their return.

There were 78 British passengers on the cruise liner when cases of the coronavirus strain - known as Covid-19 - started to emerge.

Earlier, Japan's Health Minister confirmed two Japanese passengers who contracted the Covid-19 virus on board the ship had died in hospital.

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