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News: Novel Coronavirus - update

23 January 2020

Further to the club’s previous news item (see link on the right hand side) on the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), the World Health Organisation (WHO) has reported an increase in the number of patients infected with the mysterious virus and confirmed cases in Thailand, Japan and Korea.

WHO states that since the initial report of cases on 31 December 2019, and as of 20 January 2020, 278 laboratory-confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV infection including six deaths were reported to WHO globally from China, two cases from Thailand, one case from Japan, and one case from the Republic of Korea. In China, 51 are severe cases, and 12 cases are critically ill. They are all under isolation treatment at designated medical institutions in Wuhan. Among the cases reported in China, 14 cases have been reported from Guangdong province, five from Beijing municipality and one from Shanghai municipality.

The source of the outbreak is still under investigation. Preliminary investigations have identified environmental samples positive for nCoV in Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan City, however some laboratory-confirmed patients did not report visiting this market. Cases continue to be reported from Wuhan City, and from other provinces in China. Additional investigations are needed to determine how the patients were infected, the extent of human-to-human transmission, the clinical spectrum of disease, and the geographic range of infection.

WHO has issued a situational report on 21 January which is available on the right.

More information is available on the WHO website.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United states has also confirmed its first travel-related case of the 2019-nCoV.

Standard Club is guided by the views and recommendations issued by WHO in respect of this outbreak and advises members to remain vigilant.