Health Alert – Wuhan Virus

Updated on 22 January 2020


The Situation:

As of Wednesday, 22 January, more than 540 cases have been confirmed for a mysterious respiratory illness of which all confirmed cases originated in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province and a major transportation hub. In total, 17 people have died from the virus, the majority of which between Tuesday and Wednesday with all deaths located in Wuhan.


Human-to-human transmission has been confirmed after at least 15 healthcare workers in Wuhan has contracted the virus, though it is unclear how easily the virus spreads. The WHO suggests spreading may occur between close contact such as healthcare providers and family members, as is expected with respiratory diseases.


Chinese authorities have ceased all outbound flights and trains as well as public transport in Wuhan and advised its citizens not leave unless absolutely necessary.


Chinese scientists are calling it a new strain of coronavirus, a large virus family that includes SARs and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). The outbreak comes as the country gets ready for the Lunar New Year holiday beginning this week raising concerns about further spread.


So far, the virus has spread to Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and, most recently, the United States.




Chinese scientists said Tuesday they had determined the DNA sequence of the new coronavirus, which could aid in the development of treatments, and potentially a vaccine.


The Centers for Disease Control have updated the Alert Level to 2 - Practice Enhanced Precautions. See LINK for further details and updates.


Symptoms to Watch Out For:

Authorities have advised citizens to be on the lookout for the following symptoms:

  • Fever

  • Difficulty breathing

  • Cough

  • Pneumonia (secondary infection)

Mitigating Measures to Apply:

  • Monitor local authorities for updates

  • Avoid travel to or through Wuhan

  • Avoid contact with animals (alive or dead), animal markets, and products that come from animals (such as uncooked meat)

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water isn’t available

  • Older travelers and those with underlying health issues may be at risk for more severe disease and should discuss travel to Wuhan with their healthcare provider

  • Avoid exposure to those presenting the above symptoms

  • Allow extra time for temperature screening at airports worldwide

  • Enroll in a Safe Traveler Program to receive warnings from your preferred embassy

  • Seek medical care immediately if you experience symptoms and have recently traveled to the infected areas; notify your healthcare provider of your recent travel


DISCLAIMER and Hold Harmless

Disclaimer: LSDS™ gathers information from multiple sources and offers insight and perspective to travelers. Sources cannot be validated for accuracy in every instance. Travelers assume all risk associated with their travel and are responsible for the decisions associated with travel and for their own safety. Users of this reference document agree, to hold harmless LSDS™ (LLC) its employees and clients associated with any risk or injury incurred during travel.

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