At least two cases of the deadly coronavirus have been confirmed in Canada on a husband and wife who had recently traveled to Wuhan, the center of the pneumonia-like illness that is now killing more than 100 people and sickened thousands of others around the world.
Over the weekend, the Ontario Ministry of Health confirms the country’s first case of the coronavirus, which is associated with animal life and the seafood market in the Chinese city of Wuhan. Patients, who in his 50s, reported fever and respiratory symptoms – common symptoms of the new virus – and put in isolation after returning to Canada. The case was confirmed as “alleged positive” on Saturday, officials said.
On Monday, the Canadian government announced that the patient’s wife had also tested positive for the 2019-nCoV, the new coronavirus. The woman, also in her 50s, has been in isolation in the house because her husband has been confirmed as the first case in the country, officials said.
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“Close contact will be notified of the case, be monitored for signs of disease, and were given instructions on what to do if they become sick by local health authorities,” they added.
The man suffered “mild symptoms” on the flight from Guangzhou, China, to Toronto, while on Monday, his wife reported no symptoms, although its positive results for the 2019-nCoV. He was wearing a mask on the flight, according to some reports. A private car came to pick it up from the couple’s Pearson International Airport on January 22 and take them straight home; the driver was also wearing a mask, according to CTV News. The couple lived alone, but an undisclosed number of people who had “close contact” with the couple on the flight have since contacted, reports Reuters.
During a press conference on Monday, Dr. David Williams, Ontario chief medical officer of health, said the news was “not surprising” as the new virus is contagious among humans.
Like the plague continues – at least five cases have been confirmed in the US – China’s health minister said at the weekend that he believed the virus can be spread during the incubation period, sparking fears that it can be more easily transmitted than previously thought.
National Health Minister Ma Xiaowei made the comment at a press conference on Sunday and said that the limited information about the virus, making a lot of risks that are not clear. The incubation period for the new coronavirus can range from one to 14 days, during which infectious, he said.
Ma said the country had entered a “critical” stage in response efforts as “it seems like the virus’s ability to spread is getting stronger.”
In the midst of an outbreak, the Canadian government has also advised its citizens to “avoid all travel” to the Hubei province, which includes the city of Wuhan.
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