Mystery China virus: WHO informs SL to be cautious

Mystery China virus: WHO informs SL to be cautious

Mystery China virus: WHO informs SL to be cautious

Written by Staff Writer

17 Jan, 2020 | 10:39 pm

Colombo (News 1st): Local officials have announced that a second person has died in China from a new, pneumonia-like virus. They say the death was recorded in the eastern city of Wuhan, where the outbreak began in December.

Meanwhile, Japan confirmed its first case of the virus – the second country outside China after Thailand to do so. The disease has been identified as a coronavirus, which can cause illnesses ranging from common colds to the potentially deadly Sars.

The new virus has infected dozens of people, and many cases have been linked to a fish market in Wuhan. The market was closed on 1 January. The novel coronavirus is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

The World Health Organization has informed Sri Lankan authorities and other countries to be cautious of the virus, which is now believed to have limited human to human transmission. The WHO said the possibility of cases being identified in other countries was not unexpected and called for on-going active monitoring and preparedness in other countries.

WHO advised against the application of any travel or trade restrictions on China based on the information currently available on this event. WHO in a statement said, “We are still in the earliest stages of understanding this new virus, where it came from, and how it affects people.”


Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).

Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people.


Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, an infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death.

Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

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