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UPDATE-Worldwide Health Alert

Updated on 28 January 2020

The Situation:

As of Tuesday, 28 January, nearly 4,700 confirmed cases worldwide and 106 deaths (still all in China) for the novel coronavirus are being reported (see breakdown below) in a significant jump in confirmed cases in a 24 hour period. So far, the trend remains that the majority of confirmed cases have direct connections to recent travel to Wuhan – the capital of Hubei province and a major transportation hub or close contact with someone who had recently traveled there and was infected.

Human-to-human transmission has been confirmed. Germany confirmed the first case outside China after a man caught it from a colleague who’d visited him from Shanghai. Japan also confirmed its first human-to-human case after a bus driver caught it while driving a Chinese tour group. Chinese officials warn that the virus might spread during the incubation period – when a person has the virus but isn’t yet showing symptoms. Incubation period is currently believed to be anywhere from 1 to 14 days.

The WHO has not yet moved to declare an international state of emergency. The CDC has updated China’s alert level from 2 to 3, recommending avoiding nonessential travel. Additionally, the US State Department has upgraded China from level 2 to level 3, recommending reconsidering travel to China and the highest level 4 alert, Do Not Travel, for Hubei, China.

Number of Confirmed Cases by Country:

**Reports on numbers are expected to change rapidly as the exact impact of the virus is still under investigation and hospitals are increasingly overwhelmed by the current demands.

Mainland China: 4,615 (varying number being reported as some include Hong Kong and Macau number with China)

  • Australia: 5

  • Cambodia: 1

  • France: 3

  • Germany: 1

  • Hong Kong: 8

  • Japan: 5

  • Macau: 7

  • Malaysia: 4

  • Nepal: 1

  • Singapore: 5

  • South Korea: 4

  • Sri Lanka: 1

  • Taiwan: 5

  • Thailand: 14

  • U.S.: 5

  • Vietnam: 2

  • Canada: 2 (2nd case being called “presumptive positive)

Death Toll:

106 – all in mainland China

  • 27 January 2020: First death reported in Beijing, a 50-year-old man who’d traveled from Wuhan.

  • 26 January 2020: 13 deaths and 323 additional cases in Hebei Province brought death toll to 55; first death reported in Shanghai (88-year-old man) brought total up to 56

  • 25 January 2020: China reported 15 more deaths in Wuhan, bringing total to 41. The 15 newest victims ranged in age between 55 and 87

  • Only two deaths reported outside of Hubei Province (Wuhan is the capital)

  • One death in Hebei Province more than 600 miles north of Wuhan

  • One death in Heilongjiang, over 1,500 miles from Wuhan, close to Russian border

  • A 36-year-old man is among the most recent to have died from the virus, reports that he had no chronic illnesses or other existing health conditions, but may have suffered a heart attack

Travel Effects

  • Chinese authorities have ceased all outbound flights and trains as well as public transport in Wuhan and 12 surrounding cities and advised its citizens not leave unless absolutely necessary. Travel restrictions affect approximately 56 million people.

  • Beijing implements suspension of interprovincial buses into the city as well as tour group packages to the city.

  • Many other Chinese cities have also chosen to cancel Chinese New Year festivities and major public events indefinitely.

  • Multiple countries have suspended flights to/from Wuhan and have raised alert levels concerning travel to Wuhan as well as stepped up screening processes for travelers coming from China.

  • Japan and U.S. establish plans to evacuate nationals from Wuhan with coordination from the Chinese government. Other countries beginning to make similar plans in coordination with the Chinese government.

  • Hong Kong announces it will stop issuing individual travel permits to travelers from mainland China, essentially closing its borders.


  • CDC Alert Level 3 for Novel Coronavirus in China – Avoid Nonessential Travel to China – See LINK for further details and updates.

  • Department of State updates Travel Advisory for China to Level 3: Reconsider Travel – See LINK for further details and updates.

  • Department of State Travel Advisory for Hubei, China Level 4: Do Not Travel – 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:

  • High fever

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

  • Cough and/or sore throat

  • Muscle Aches in some cases also being reported

  • 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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