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    China scrambles to contain 'strengthening' virus

    China scrambles to contain 'strengthening' virus

    by Reuters
    Sunday, 26 January 2020 14:51 GMT


    From major disaster, conflicts and under-reported stories, we shine a light on the world’s hotspots

    (Adds comments from mayor of Wuhan)

    * Coronavirus' transmission ability getting stronger
    * Incubation 1-14 days, infectious during incubation
    * China confirms 1,975 people infected, 56 dead
    * U.S. to evacuate diplomatic staff, citizens from Wuhan
    * China imposes temporary nationwide ban on sale of wildlife

    By Gabriel D. Crossley and Cheng Leng

    BEIJING/SHANGHAI, Jan 26 (Reuters) -

    The ability of the new coronavirus to spread is strengthening and infections could continue to rise, China's National Health Commission said on Sunday, with more than 2,000 people in China infected and 56 killed by the disease.

    Health authorities around the world are racing to prevent a pandemic after a handful of cases of infection were reported outside China, including in Thailand, Australia, the United States and France.

    The mayor of Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, said he expected another 1,000 new patients in the city, which was stepping up construction of special hospitals.

    The newly identified coronavirus has created alarm because much about it is still unknown, such as how dangerous it is and how easily it spreads between people. It can cause pneumonia, which has been deadly in some cases.

    China's National Health Commission Minister Ma Xiaowei said the incubation period for the virus can range from one to 14 days, during which infection can occur, which was not the case with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).

    SARS was a coronavirus that originated in China and killed nearly 800 people globally in 2002 and 2003.

    "According to recent clinical information, the virus' ability to spread seems to be getting somewhat stronger," Ma told reporters.
    The Lunar New Year holiday, traditionally celebrated by hundreds of millions of Chinese travelling around the country and abroad to see family, began on Friday but has been severely disrupted by the outbreak.

    Ma said China would intensify its containment efforts, which have so far included transportation and travel curbs and the cancellation of big events.

    The country may extend the week-long Lunar New Year holiday, state broadcaster CCTV reported, citing a meeting hosted by Chinese premier Li Keqiang.

    The virus, believed to have originated late last year in a seafood market in Wuhan that was illegally selling wildlife, has spread to cities including Beijing and Shanghai. Hong Kong has six confirmed cases.

    The World Health Organisation this week stopped short of calling the outbreak a global health emergency, but some health experts question whether China can contain the epidemic.

    Chinese President Xi Jinping described the situation as "grave" on Saturday.

    China confirmed 2,051 cases of infection as of 7 p.m. (1100 GMT) on Jan. 26, while the death toll from the virus remained at 56, state broadcaster CCTV reported.

    Health officials in Orange County, California, reported that a third case had been registered in the United States in a traveller from Wuhan, who was in isolation and in good condition.

    On Saturday, Canada declared a first "presumptive" confirmed case in a resident who had returned from Wuhan. Australia confirmed its first four cases.

    No fatalities have been reported outside China.

    WILDLIFE SALES BAN

    On Sunday, China temporarily banned nationwide the sale of wildlife in markets, restaurants, and e-commerce platforms. Wild and often poached animals packed together in Chinese markets are blamed as incubators for viruses to evolve and jump the species barrier to humans.

    Snakes, peacocks, crocodiles and other species can also be found for sale via Taobao, an e-commerce website run by Alibaba.
    The New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society called on China to make the ban permanent.

    The U.S. State Department said it will relocate personnel at its Wuhan consulate to the United States, while Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said his government was working with China to arrange a charter flight for Japanese nationals to return from Wuhan.

    The outbreak has prompted widening curbs on movements within China, with Wuhan, a city of 11 million, on virtual lockdown and transport links all-but severed except for emergency vehicles

    CANCELLATIONS AND MISTRUST

    Health authorities in Beijing urged people not to shake hands but instead salute using a traditional cupped-hand gesture. The advice was sent in a text message that went out to mobile phone users in the city on Sunday morning.

    Beijing also postponed the reopening of the city's schools and universities after the Lunar New Year holiday, state radio reported. Hong Kong had already delayed the reopening of schools to Feb. 17.

    China has called for transparency in managing the crisis, after a cover-up of the spread of the SARS virus eroded public trust, but officials in Wuhan have been criticised for their handling of the current outbreak.

    "People in my hometown all suspect the real infected patients number given by authorities," said Violet Li, who lives in the Wuhan district where the seafood market is located.
    Illustrating the extend of disruption to life in China, overall passenger travel declined by nearly 29% on Saturday, the first day of the Lunar New Year, from a year earlier, with air passengers down nearly 42%, a transportation ministry official said.
    Many cinemas across China were closed with major film premieres postponed.

    Cruise operators including Royal Caribbean Cruises, and Costa Cruises said they had cancelled a combined 12 cruises that had been scheduled to embark from Chinese ports before Feb. 2.
    Hong Kong Disneyland and the city's Ocean Park were closed on Sunday. Shanghai Disneyland, which expected 100,000 visitors daily through the holiday period, has already closed.

    Airports around the world have stepped up screening of passengers from China, although some health officials and experts have questioned the effectiveness of these efforts.

    (Reporting by Yilei Sun, Samuel Shen, Huizhong Wu, Se Young Lee, Shivani Singh, Cheng Leng, Martin Pollard; Writing by Tony Munroe, Toby Chopra and Giles Elgood Editing by Michael Perry and Frances Kerry)

    http://news.trust.org/item/20200126105121-12mxo
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    Junior Member earlyboomer's Avatar
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    A very informative podcast on the corona virus:
    https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/war...ent/e/66848728
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Texas Health Officials Confirm 4 Patients Tested for Coronavirus

    Texas Department of State Health Services says one of four cases investigated in Texas has been confirmed negative

    By Hannah Jones [COLOR=rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.9)]Published January 24, 2020 Updated on January 25, 2020 at 4:04 am

    [The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is working with local health departments to assess people with respiratory illness and recent travel to Wuhan, China for 2019 novel coronavirus testing.

    Public health personnel have identified four people in Texas who meet the testing criteria due to their travel history and respiratory symptoms.


    JAN 25
    Baylor Student Tested for Possible Case of Coronavirus; Risk Low on Campus


    JAN 25
    Suspected Case of Coronavirus Investigated in Brazos County; Texas A&M Safe to Attend

    One person has tested negative for coronavirus, and testing is ongoing for the other three. DSHS refused to say where the cases were until they are positive.

    NBC 5 has already reported on cases being investigated in Waco and Bryan/College Station where students at both Baylor University and Texas A&M University are being tested for the virus after traveling to Wuhan, China.


    Anyone who has recently traveled in Wuhan, China should monitor themselves for symptoms and contact their health care provider if they develop fever, cough or shortness of breath within 14 days of being in Wuhan, DSHS said.


    DSHS is urging health care professionals to ask patients with respiratory symptoms about their travel history and contact their local or regional health department if they think a patient may have novel coronavirus.

    According to DSHS, there are simple steps everyone can take to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses like the novel coronavirus.

    Those steps are similar to what one would take to prevent the flu.


    Tips for Avoiding the Flu



    • Get a flu vaccine every season, especially people at high risk
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
    • Stay home when you are sick
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
    • If you're experiencing flu symptoms, visit your doctor and begin taking antiviral medications to help you recover more quickly


    DSHS has additional information on the 2019 novel coronavirus for the public, health care professionals, health departments and labs at dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus.

    https://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health/t...virus/2298197/
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Cuomo: 4 People ‘Under Investigation’ For Coronavirus In New York

    ERICA BROSNAN JANUARY 24, 2020 - 12:41 PM

    Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images

    NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — At least four people are currently “under investigation” in New York for the potentially fatal coronavirus, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.

    "The State Department of Health currently has four persons under investigation for novel coronavirus that are under isolation as their cases are being tested at the CDC," Cuomo said in a statement. "So far, one of these cases has been proven negative and three are still pending. While the risk for New York is currently low, the Governor is calling for increased vigilance to ensure New Yorkers are protected."

    Coronavirus Explained: What You Need to Know


    The news comes on the same day that health officials in Illinois confirmed that a Chicago woman in her 60s was the second person in the United States confirmed to have the virus.


    Cuomo, in a statement, said he wants New Yorkers to be prepared for a possible outbreak.


    “We are undertaking a wide-reaching and rigorous effort with all stakeholders, including healthcare providers, airports and federal health officials, to put in place the appropriate precautions to keep New Yorkers safe,” the governor said.


    Symptoms of the virus resemble a common cold. If you suspect you might be ill, follow the Health Department’s guidelines to protect yourself and others.


    Symptoms of the coronavirus include:


    • Runny nose
    • Headache
    • Cough
    • Sore throat
    • Fever
    • A general feeling of being unwell.


    New Yorkers are advised to wash their hands often, avoid touching their face, avoid coming into close contact with anyone who may be ill, clean and disinfect surfaces and take precautions when coughing or sneezing.


    Individuals who are experiencing symptoms and may have traveled to areas of concern, or have been in contact with somebody who has traveled to these areas, should call ahead to their healthcare provider before presenting for treatment.


    Though there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says all precautions are being taken.


    “We are preparing on the assumption that it's not a question of ‘if’ but a question of ‘when’ we start to have cases of coronavirus here in New York City,” he said.


    Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot says the risk currently is low, but she's asking New Yorkers to be vigilant in taking care of their head.

    She advises: “If they have traveled to Wuhan in the past 14 days, and they find themselves with symptoms of fever and a cough or shortness of breath, that they contact their provider.


    Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began screening passengers returning from the center of the outbreak – Wuhan, China – at John F. Kennedy Airport and airports in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The city has since been placed under partial lockdown and its airport and railway stations have been closed to departing passengers.


    Meanwhile, New Jersey health officials have confirmed that a patient who was hospitalized at Hackensack University Medical Center did not have the virus.


    The disease has shut down parts of China and led to fears of a global epidemic. Currently, there is no cure for the coronavirus.


    At least 26 have died from the disease in China – which is working to build a 1,000-bed hospital dedicated to infected patients.

    The Wuhan outbreak is suspected to have begun from wild animals sold at a food market in the city. The market is closed for investigation.

    https://wcbs880.radio.com/articles/n...us-in-ny-cuomo

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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    China coronavirus death toll climbs to 80 as government scrambles to contain outbreak

    The death toll from the new coronavirus outbreak in China rose to 80 Monday as the government extended the Lunar New Year holiday to keep the public at ...
    NBC News 2 hours ago
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    www.cnbc.com › 2020/01/27 › cdc-is-monitoring-110-possible-coron...

    CDC is monitoring 110 possible coronavirus cases across 26 states ...

    10 hours ago -
    U.S. health officials are currently monitoring 110 people across 26 states for the coronavirus ...
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