The British Government admitted Thursday that there is a “probability” that there are cases of the new coronavirus in the United Kingdom, although he said the risk is low.
In an appearance in Parliament, the Minister of Health, Matt Hancock, said it is possible that there are cases of this condition that has caused 17 deaths in China, but insisted that the country is “well prepared” to this risk.
The British authorities yesterday ordered the opening of a special area at London’s Heathrow airport through which passengers arriving from the Chinese city of Wuhan must pass, where the outbreak broke out, as a precaution.
Government medical advisors “have reviewed the risks to the population, from very low to low and have concluded that, although there is a greater likelihood of cases arising in this country” with respect to others, they are “well prepared and well equipped to face them, “said Hancock.
The head of Health indicated that the British Health (NHS, for its acronym in English) is in a position to face possible outbreaks and that the message that it sends to the population is that “the United Kingdom is always well prepared for such cases” .
“We will remain vigilant and constantly review” the situation, he said.
Hancock also reported that the Government recommends avoiding traveling to the Chinese city of Wuhan unless it is “essential” and that Chinese visitors arriving in the country will receive information on what they should do if they feel sick.
The National Health Commission of China reported yesterday that the new coronavirus causing Wuhan pneumonia could mutate and spread beyond the 571 infected confirmed so far, all of them in the central-eastern Chinese province of Hubei.
The virus has also spread to other countries, such as the United States, Japan, South Korea and Thailand.
According to the WHO, the usual signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough and shortness of breath.