January 23, 2020
Four people in Scotland are being tested for suspected coronavirus and there will be many more cases in other cities across the country, the head of infection medicine at the University of Edinburgh has said.
First Suspected Cases Of Coronavirus In The UK As Four Admitted To Hospital In Scotland
Professor Jurgen said three cases are in Edinburgh and the other is believed to be in Glasgow.
Tests are currently being carried out and none of the patients, who are Chinese nationals, have been confirmed as having the disease.
They all travelled to Scotland from Wuhan, where the outbreak is thought to have originated, within the past two weeks and are showing symptoms of respiratory trouble, a red flag for the virus.Professor Haas told the PA news agency: “We have currently three cases suspected Wuhan coronavirus in Edinburgh and as far as I understand one case in Glasgow.”
He said the cases emerged  overnight, adding: “The situation will be pretty similar in pretty much all UK cities with a large number of Chinese students.
“It’s not too surprising. My suspicious is that there will probably be many more cases in many other cities in the UK. None of the cases I know of have been confirmed.”
He said there is only one laboratory testing for the virus, operated by Public Health England (PHE).
The outbreak has killed 17 people and infected more than 630 in China as authorities around the world work to prevent a global pandemic.
New cases were also reported in Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Vietnam on Thursday.The previously unknown virus strain is believed to have emerged late last year from illegally traded wildlife at an animal market in the central Chinese city of Wuhan.
Most transport in Wuhan, a city of 11m, was suspended on Thursday and people were told not to leave. Hours later, neighbouring Huanggang, a city of about 7m people, announced a similar lockdown.
On Thursday, before the UK cases were reported, health secretary Matt Hancock said the NHS is “ready to respond appropriately” and that while “there is an increased likelihood that cases may arise in this country, we are well prepared and well equipped to deal with them”.
He said England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, is in contact with international experts and his counterparts to monitor the situation.
Experts from the World Health Organisation (WHO) are meeting again on Thursday to decide whether to declare a global public health emergency over the virus.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated. Follow HuffPost UK on Twitter here, and on Facebook here.Related... Here’s What We Know About Coronavirus Chinese City Of Wuhan On Lockdown To Prevent Spread Of Coronavirus Outbreak
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