FPI sources are reporting that on January 23 the Chinese authorities have put a lockdown on the city of Wuhan and other urban areas of Hubei province – including Huanggang and Ezhou following the outbreak of the coronavirus that has left over 571 people infected with 17 fatalities. All outbound passenger travel, including air, rail, and long-distance bus transport, has been suspended. In light of this, FocusPoint International is advising against all further, non-essential travel to the Hubei province in China.
The Wuhan coronavirus is currently thought to be a more mild form of the SARS and MERS viruses that takes longer to develop symptoms. The virus infects the lungs, and symptoms start with a fever and cough. It can progress to shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. All the fatalities so far have been in Hubei, the province around Wuhan.
The World Health Organization (WHO) is yet to declare a global emergency over the new virus. Chinese authorities have suspended all flights and passenger train services out of Wuhan. Bus, subway, and ferry services have also been shut down. A specialized command center has been set up in Wuhan to contain the virus.
FPI advises travelers in the region to reduce the risk of infection by avoiding people who are sick. Try to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If you are sick and have reason to believe it may be the Wuhan coronavirus, due to travel to the region or coming into contact with someone who has been there, you should let a health care provider know and seek treatment early. Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze and disinfect the objects and surfaces you touch. If traveling to China, be aware of symptoms and avoid live animal markets, which is where the latest outbreak began in Wuhan.
Travelers in the region are advised to partake in local precautionary measures, such as temperature screenings and necessary vaccinations.
FocusPoint International is monitoring this developing situation. FocusPoint’s Crisis Response Center is prepared to provide member assistance 24/7. Please do not hesitate to contact us at any time, day or night.
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