Published: Sun, January 26, 2020
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Canada's first 'presumptive positive' case of coronavirus found in Ontario

Canada's first 'presumptive positive' case of coronavirus found in Ontario

While there have been no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Canada, Ontario medical officials believe it could happen and are assuring the public they're prepared.

At least 26 people have died in China and the city at the centre of the outbreak, Wuhan, is under quarantine as health officials scramble to understand the mysterious disease and keep it from spreading, Postmedia Network reports.

Canada has confirmed its first case of 2019-nCov, the SARS-like virus that has already swept across China and found its way to the United States and Europe.

Ontario's chief medical officer of health, Dr. David Williams, said the province recently evaluated three patients that "met some case definition:" flu-like symptoms and travel to Wuhan, the Chinese city at the epicentre of the outbreak.

Australia and Malaysia reported their first cases Saturday - four each - and Japan, it's third.

Ontario's Health Minister Christine Elliott says while there have been no confirmed cases in Canada and the risks posed to Ontarians remain low, "it's not unlikely that we will receive cases".

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According to Toronto Public Health, the patient is listed in stable condition.

The new virus comes from a large family of what are known as coronaviruses, some causing nothing worse than a cold. Some coronaviruses spread between animals, some pass between animals and people, and others go from people to people.

Stewart said the coronavirus is a respiratory virus that has symptoms ranging from a mild cold to pneumonia, which can be fatal.

While coronavirus is close to the deadly SARS virus that broke out in Toronto in 2003, de Villa said the circumstances between now and then are completely different.

The coronavirus is a new respiratory virus with pneumonia-like symptoms and it first appeared in Wuhan City, China late a year ago. Symptoms can include runny nose, headache, cough, sore throat and fever.

Consult your health care provider as soon as possible if you are anxious about symptoms or have travelled to a region where severe coronaviruses are known to occur. Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces.

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