Published: Thu, January 23, 2020
Sci-tech | By Patricia Wade

WHO delays decision to declare coronavirus outbreak health emergency

WHO delays decision to declare coronavirus outbreak health emergency

Staff move bio-waste containers past the entrance of the Wuhan Medical Treatment Center, where some infected with a new virus are being treated.

The airport and train stations will be closed to outgoing passengers.

The Matildas, Australia's women's soccer team, has been caught up in the emergency after travelling to China to play Olympic qualifiers.

A map created by US researchers is tracking in real-time a virus in China that has sickened hundreds of people and resulted in at least 17 deaths.

"We screen millions of people and did not detect a single person with SARS", said Khan, pointing to the 2003 outbreak of the disease that hit Toronto and cities around the world.

Those matches had been due to go ahead in Wuhan.

The Chinese city where the new coronavirus started, Wuhan, has been put under quarantine while health officials are preparing a global response.

The virus, which causes pneumonia-like symptoms, was discovered in the metropolis of Wuhan, the capital of Hubei, in late December.

This week marks the peak of the biggest human migration in the world, as hundreds of millions of Chinese travel for Lunar New Year festivities. Health officials said they will not release the locations that the patient may have visited unless they're not able to identify people with whom he has come into contact with.

A patient is transferred by an ambulance to the Infectious Disease Centre in Hong Kong. South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Macao, and the United States have also reported one infection each. That would have significantly increased the risk of spreading the disease from the Wuhan hotspot to the whole country and overseas. Outbound flights and rail service from the city have been suspended, as well as travel by bus, subway and ferry.

Nick Kyrgios 'feels the support,' wins Australian opener
Against Sonego, he served 14. "It's been an emotional few months", Kyrgios said when congratulated on court by John McEnroe. Kyrgios will now play Gilles Simon in the second round after the Frenchman beat Pablo Cuevas 6-1 6-3 6-3.

The US President Donald Trump said he trusts the information coming out of China on the coronavirus, which has killed nine people there and sickened almost 500 others, adding that the US remains in control of the situation within its borders after the first case within the country was confirmed.

Bats being the native host of the 2019-nCoV "would be the logical and convenient reasoning, though it remains likely intermediate host (s) were in the transmission cascade from bats to humans", said researchers.

A virologist who helped to identify the source of the SARS virus almost two decades ago recently had some rather ominous things to say about the outbreak in Wuhan.

"From what we know, the source was the wild animals sold at the seafood market", Gao told journalists on Wednesday.

Chinese authorities have confirmed a new strain of coronavirus that originated in the nation can be transmitted between humans.

Director general Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus said more information was needed about the spread of the infection.

Meanwhile, in Geneva, the World Health Organization's emergency committee is meeting to assess the global risks posed by the virus and decide if it should be declared an worldwide public health emergency - as happened with swine flu and Ebola.

"The decision about whether or not to declare a public health emergency of global concern is one I take extremely seriously, and one I'm only prepared to make with appropriate consideration of all of the evidence".

Experts worry in particular when health workers are sickened in outbreaks by new viruses, because it can suggest the disease is becoming more transmissible and because spread in hospitals can often amplify the epidemic.

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