Archive | February 6, 2020

Inside the lab working to find a vaccine for the deadly coronavirus #coronavirus #wuhan #china #emergency #vaccine


10 MORE people diagnosed with coronavirus aboard cruise ship quarantined off Japan with 3,700 passengers & crew #coronavirus #Japan #Yokohama #wuhan #china #emergency #ship #quarantine

Coronavirus Alert

Ten additional passengers aboard a cruise ship quarantined off the coast of Japan have tested positive for coronavirus, just one day after 10 others on the vessel were confirmed to have the illness.

Around 3,700 people face at least two weeks of quarantine aboard the cruise ship – the Diamond Princess, now docked at the port of Yokohama – as health screenings continue. Those with symptoms have been moved to medical facilities for treatment.

Only a fraction of the ship’s passengers have undergone tests so far, making it unclear whether more cases will be detected, with 10 of the 71 test results received on Thursday coming back positive.

The new infections on the locked-down cruise ship bring the total number of cases in Japan to 45, among 28,000 confirmed cases worldwide, most of them in China’s Hubei province, where the outbreak originated. Nearly 600 people have died from the virus.

The first infection aboard the Diamond Princess involved an elderly man from Hong Kong who tested positive for the novel coronavirus after he disembarked from the ship in late January, stoking fears that other passengers may have been exposed to the illness, which can spread from person-to-person.

Frightening first-hand accounts – as well as photos and videos – from passengers on the quarantined ship have emerged online, with one noting they could hear “painful coughs” of others aboard the vessel in nearby rooms. “Of course I’m worried about myself, but I’m afraid for the crews who are carrying meals and cleaning rooms,”said the passenger, who has remained anonymous.

As the disease toll continues to climb, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe signaled earlier this week that the country could expand travel restrictions on foreign nationals who have visited China recently, with the PM noting “the situation is changing by the minute” and that officials were “open-minded on what measures to take.”

Courtesy of

Coronavirus update: Number of infected ‘certainly’ higher than Chinese authorities admit #coronavirus #wuhan #china #emergency

Coronavirus Alert

CHINA’S coronavirus epidemic has infected considerably more people than what the Chinese authorities have reported, a health expert has warned.

The novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) has killed at least 565 people and infected more than 28,000 globally. But Dr Paweł Grzesiowski, an immunologist from the Medical Centre of Postgraduate Education in Warsaw, Poland, fears the number of infections has been severely underestimated.

The health expert said overloaded waiting rooms, inefficient laboratories and lacklustre screening has likely skewed the official figures.

He told Polska Times: “I am, unfortunately, certain this is not the actual scale of the epidemic.

“All the official announcements only provide the number of laboratory-confirmed infections.

“We know that both the efficiency of laboratories and the amount of collected materials is disproportionate to what is actually going on there.

“After all, if a thousand patients report to a doctor one day, not everyone can be tested within 24 hours.

“The number of infected is certainly higher than what official communications have said.

“We will probably never know the real numbers because some patients do not receive any tests at all, only die or are treated – and these cases are never registered and thus never confirmed.

“But we don’t need the number of ill to describe the danger because even underestimated but regularly collected figures allow us to evaluate the situation.”

The opinion was shared by Professor David Heymann, who said the numbers are always probably greater.

The coronavirus first appeared in December last year in China’s Wuhan City, Hubei Province and the pathogen has spread like wildfire.

The virus has been confirmed in 27 countries outside of mainland China, including three infections in the UK.

After China, Japan has suffered the highest number of infections with 45 people being treated for coronavirus.

Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong and South Korea follow with 28, 25, 24 and 23 infections respectively.

In response to the scale and rapid spread of the virus, the World Health Organization (WHO) has called the epidemic a global emergency.

On Wednesday, February 5, the WHO revealed nearly 4,000 new infections were confirmed in just 24 hours.

The risk assessment for China was ranked as “Very High” and the global risk was “High”.

The coronavirus family of pathogens target the lungs, triggering symptoms often mistaken for the common cold or flu.

Symptoms start with fever and dry cough, before developing into breathing difficulty.

If left untreated, the coronavirus can induce pneumonia, kidney failure and death.

The WHO has urged people to avoid close contact with people suffering from respiratory infections.

Frequent hand washing is also advised, especially after contact with ill people.

The WHO said: “People with symptoms of acute respiratory infection should practice cough etiquette – maintain distance, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or clothing, and wash hands.

“Within healthcare facilities, enhance stand infection preventions and control practices in hospital, especially emergency departments.”

Courtesy of