A UK coronavirus patient attended a London conference with 250 others sparking fears of the deadly bug spreading throughout the capital, it’s reported.
The unknown person is said to have visited the UK Bus Summit at the QEII Centre in Westminster on February 6.
The unknown person visited the UK Bus Summit at the QEII Centre in Westminster on February 6, it’s reportedCredit: AlamyMASS INFECTION FEARS
Transport Times, who organised the conference, were reportedly forced to fire out emails to attendees warning them that a visitor was one of nine Brits to contract the virus.
The email included a letter from Public Health England (PHE) that told the delegates to self-isolate, avoid contact with others and call the NHS helpline if they developed symptoms, according to FT.
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It said: “While the degree of contact you may have had with the case at the summit is unlikely to have been significant, we are taking a precautionary approach and informing you.”
Among the conference guests were MPs and directors of national transport operators.
The authorities have refused to make clear any details on the infected patient, including where they live and where they have travelled from.
PHE is now said to be rushing to contact people who may have had contact with the infected conference attendee.
Transport Times told the FT it was “working closely with Public Health England, following their advice closely, and have distributed a letter of guidance from PHE to all attendees”.
It comes after a Chinese woman was revealed to be the first person in London to be diagnosed with coronavirus, on Wednesday.
The patient walked into AE at Lewisham hospital after taking an Uber.
Two hospital workers are now in isolation at home after coming into contact with the woman.
Uber says it has temporarily suspended the account of the driver “out of an abundance of caution”.
Meanwhile a GP surgery in north London has now closed for the day “due to the coronavirus“.
The closure of Ritchie Street Health Centre in Islington is not thought to be related to the cases in Lewisham.
It comes as the number of people tested for coronavirus in England surged by almost 800 overnight, from 1,758 to 2,521.
The chief executive of the NHS today warned that many more people in the UK may need to self-isolate in a bid to stop the spread of coronavirus.
Sir Simon Stevens issued the warning as more than 80 people quarantined at Arrowe Park Hospital on the Wirral left following 14 days in isolation.
The group were the first to be flown out of Wuhan city in China – the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak – by the Foreign Office and back to the UK.
Earlier, England‘s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, said officials were working on delaying the spread of coronavirus cases throughout the UK.
He said what happens with coronavirus – also known as Covid-19 – could go one of two ways, with the first scenario seeing the Chinese government getting on top of the epidemic and then a limited impact on the rest of the world.
While it is “highly likely” the UK will see more cases, it is possible the epidemic will go away, possibly aided by a change in the seasons which could dampen the spread of the virus, he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
Prof Whitty said: “The alternative is that it’s not possible to contain in China and this then starts (to spread) – probably initially quite slowly – around the world and then unless the seasons come to our rescue, then it is going to come to a situation where we have it in Europe and the UK in due course.”
A woman who was the first person diagnosed with coronavirus in London ‘self-presented’ at Lewisham Hospital on SundayCredit: Alamy A worker in a medical mask cleaning inside Ritchie Street Health Centre in Islington which has closed due to the coronavirusCredit: London News Pictures The staff member disinfects surfaces at Ritchie Street Health Centre in Islington in LondonCredit: London News Pictures Workers in hazmat suits were pictured cleaning a surgery in SussexCredit: Chris Eades
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