Conferences become TravelRisk: Delegates Infected with China Coronavirus by Wuhan participant

Coronavirus: Gas analysis conference at Grand Hyatt Singapore linked to infections

A 27-year-old Singaporean man who was at the business event at the Grand Hyatt Singapore is among those confirmed to have contracted the coronavirus.ST

China coronavirus now a Global TravelRisk

Also referred to as Wuhan Coronavirus, Wuhan Virus, Wuhan Pneumonia.

A new respiratory virus first detected in the Chinese city of Wuhan has infected hundreds of Chinese citizens and claimed a number of lives.

The fast-spreading infection, which causes pneumonia-like symptoms, has prompted Chinese authorities to quarantine several major cities and cancel some Lunar New Year events.

Here are six maps and graphics that will help you understand what is going on.

1. Cases have been mainly in China

Hundreds of patients have been infected with the virus across China, with central Hubei province the worst-affected.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) is warning the number of cases is likely to rise further, and Chinese authorities have introduced a number of measures to try to halt the virus’s spread.

Map showing the number of virus cases in China
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Travel restrictions have been imposed on a number of cities in Hubei province and people have been asked to wear face masks in public places.

The Chinese government has also closed a number of temples, the Forbidden City and part of the Great Wall.

The growing list of restrictions comes at the beginning of a week-long holiday celebrating Lunar New Year – one of the most important dates in the Chinese calendar – when millions of people travel home.

The WHO has not yet classed the virus as an “international emergency”, partly because of the low number of overseas cases, but said it “may yet become one”.

“Make no mistake, this is, though, an emergency in China,” said WHO director-general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

Women wear masks in ShanghaiImage copyrightGETTY IMAGES
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2. Hubei province has been particularly badly affected

More than 500 cases have been recorded in Hubei province – the centre of the virus outbreak.

Restrictions on travel are affecting at least 20 million people across 10 cities – including the capital Wuhan, where the virus emerged.

Its origins have been linked to the city’s seafood market.

Map showing main hospitals and planned hospital site in Wuhan
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Wuhan – which has a population of 11 million people – has gone into lockdown, with authorities suspending flights and train services in and out of the city.

My university is checking every student’s body temperature every day and are offering free masks. It also has its own hospital and ambulance,” Chongthan Pepe Bifhowjit, an Indian student at the Wuhan University of Technology, told the BBC.

Videos have been circulating on social media, reportedly taken by Wuhan residents, showing long queues at local hospitals.

In a bid to tackle the increased demand for medical services, the authorities are building a new 1,000-bed hospital in the capital.

State-owned news outlet Changjiang Daily said the hospital could be ready by 3 February. A total of 35 diggers and 10 bulldozers are currently working on the site.

Diggers in Wuhan at site for new field hospitalImage copyrightGETTY IMAGES
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3. There have been some cases elsewhere

Outside China, confirmed cases have been recorded in Thailand, Vietnam, Taiwan, South Korea, Singapore, Nepal, Japan, the US and France.

Other nations are investigating suspected cases, including the UK and Canada.

Map showing international cases of the coronavirus
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Many authorities have announced screening measures for passengers from China, including the major airport hubs of Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Taiwan has banned people arriving from Wuhan, and the US state department warned its nationals to exercise increased caution in China.

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4. The symptoms are respiratory

Coronaviruses are common, and typically cause mild respiratory symptoms, such as a cough or runny nose.

But some are more serious – such as the deadly Sars (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (Mers).

This outbreak – known as novel coronavirus (nCoV) – is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

Infographic showing the symptoms of the coronavirus
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It seems to start with a fever, followed by a dry cough and then, after a week, leads to shortness of breath.

But in more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.

Most victims have been elderly people, suffering from other chronic diseases including Parkinson’s and diabetes.

Peter Piot, professor of global health and director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said the “good news” was that data suggested the virus may have a lower mortality than Sars.

There was also a diagnostic test and greater global sharing of information than previously, he said.

“And that is essential because you cannot deal with a potential pandemic in one country alone.”

There is not yet a specific anti-viral treatment for the infection, so people with the virus are currently being treated for their symptoms.

Man gets temperature takenImage copyrightGETTY IMAGES
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5. You can do things to reduce your chances of catching it

The WHO is advising people in affected areas to follow standard procedures to reduce the chance of catching the virus.

They include hand and respiratory hygiene as well as safe food practices.

Infographic showing what you can do to reduce your risk of catching coronavirus
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People are advised to avoid close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory infections; wash hands regularly, especially after direct contact with ill people or their environment; and avoid unprotected contact with farm or wild animals.

Avoiding eating raw or undercooked animal products is also advised.

Those with symptoms of coronavirus should practise “cough etiquette”, including maintaining distance, covering coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or the inside of an elbow, and washing hands.

The WHO has said that while there is evidence of transmission between people in close contact, such as families or those in healthcare settings, there is not yet evidence of onward transmission.

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6. If a case is suspected, there are processes to follow

The Chinese government has classified the outbreak in the same category as the Sars epidemic.

This means people diagnosed with the virus in the country must be isolated and can be placed in quarantine.

Within healthcare facilities, the WHO advises staff to implement enhanced standard infection prevention and control practices in hospitals, especially in emergency departments.

Graphic showing some of the recommended measures for hospital staff dealing with Coronavirus
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The WHO advises that patients should be assessed quickly and treated for the level of severity of the disease they have – mild, moderate, or severe.

It also recommends immediately implementing infection prevention measures. These include staff wearing protective clothing and limiting patient movement around the hospital.

In the UK, family doctors – GPs – are being advised to place patients suspected of having coronavirus in isolation and avoid physical examinations.

Official guidance from Public Health England (PHE) says patients should remain in a room away from other patients and staff and be prevented from using communal toilets.

The UK government’s emergency committee, Cobra, has held a meeting to discuss the outbreak.

Reported by BBC on 25 January 2020.

Travel Risk of Virus: Is the aggressive strain of the virus ravaging Mecca responsible for ill passengers on Emirates Flight?

  • A particularly aggressive strain of a virus is ravaging Mecca
  • some of the passengers on the Emirates flight were recently in mecca
A plane from Dubai landed at John F. Kennedy International Airport and was held away from the terminal after several passengers on board reported feeling sick.
The Emirates Airbus A380 arrived at Terminal 4 after 13 hours in the air and was met by the Centers for Disease Control and Port Authority police. After interviews and inspections, 10 crew members and passengers were transported to a Jamaica Hospital in Queens. Nine others showed symptoms but refused medical treatment.
Emirates Flight 203 landed in New York Wednesday shortly after 9 a.m. with about 520 people on board, including rapper Vanilla Ice, who took to Twitter to document the ordeal.

The flight was direct from Dubai and did not make a stop in Mecca as the New York mayor’s office erroneously reported earlier.

Shortly before 10:30 a.m., Emirates Airlines said only about 10 passengers from Dubai had taken ill. Passengers said the number was in dozens, and the CDC issued a statement that 100 people were sick.

A government source briefed on situation said there was no evidence of a security or terror issue. Emirates‘ home office told U.S. officials it believes this incident was caused by food poisoning, but passengers also suggested a nasty flu virus could also be to blame.

“Even well before the flight when we were on line getting on board (in Dubai), there were people that were obviously very sick that should not have been allowed to get on board in the first place,” said passenger Erin Sykes.

Some point to a particularly aggressive strain of the virus ravaging Mecca, where some of the passengers had recently spent time. The flight did not go to a terminal but was directed to a hardstand area as emergency medical response teams investigated the cause of the illness, a standard procedure practiced by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for such emergencies.

“Passengers who are not ill will be allowed to continue with their travel plans, and if necessary will be followed up with by health officials,” said the CDC in a statement.

Mahesh Varavooru says his wife was not one of numerous passengers who fell ill, but she did see several people vomiting during the flight.

“She was scared, obviously, because it didn’t taxi yet and she was hoping the fight was going taxi and she couldn’t get out and was the middle of runway and cops all around,” Varavooru said about his wife’s experience on the plane.

All ten patients taken to the hospital were tested for the flu. The results of that test are expected sometime Thursday. As for the rest of the people on board who may have been exposed to the mystery illness, they’ve been told to follow up with their doctor if they feel sick at all in the coming week.

Photos From The Scene

emiratesflight203atjfka Emirates Flight Held At JFK Airport After Several Reported Sick On Board

Emergency vehicles surround Emirates Flight 203 in a holding area at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York on Sept. 5, 2018. (credit: CBS2)

emiratesflight203atjfkb Emirates Flight Held At JFK Airport After Several Reported Sick On Board

Emergency vehicles surround Emirates Flight 203 in a holding area at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York on Sept. 5, 2018. (credit: CBS2)

emiratesflight203atjfkc Emirates Flight Held At JFK Airport After Several Reported Sick On Board

Emergency vehicles surround Emirates Flight 203 in a holding area at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York on Sept. 5, 2018. (credit: CBS2)

emiratesflight203atjfkd Emirates Flight Held At JFK Airport After Several Reported Sick On Board

Emergency vehicles surround Emirates Flight 203 in a holding area at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York on Sept. 5, 2018. (credit: CBS2)

Reported by CBS News on 5 September 2018.