The Island’s Director of Public Health is continuing to review and update preparations for dealing with coronavirus, in the light of the latest developments in China and the UK.
Dr Henrietta Ewart joined Directors of Public Health from across the UK and the Crown Dependencies for a briefing by the UK Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Professor Chris Witty. This followed the World Health Organisation declaring coronavirus to be a public health global emergency, and the raising of the UK risk level from ‘low’ to ‘moderate’. Two cases of the disease have been confirmed in the UK today for the first time.
Professor Witty said the UK had been preparing for cases of coronavirus, has measures in place to respond immediately and is working closely with the WHO and the international community to ensure all eventualities are prepared for.
He confirmed the current approach adopted in the UK and Crown Dependencies of early identification and isolation of suspected cases remains key.
Dr Ewart said:
‘This is a rapidly changing situation. We are keeping in close touch with Public Health England and the UK Chief Medical Officer so that our plans are updated in line with the latest evidence and information. All relevant guidance is being shared with health care colleagues at the hospitals and in the community, who are testing preparedness to deal with a situation of this sort.’
Current guidance to travellers returning from China remains in place:
- only people who have visited Wuhan should self-isolate, if they do not have symptoms
- People with symptoms who have returned from anywhere in mainland China should contact their GP in the first instance
Comprehensive information and advice updated daily is available on the UK Government website via this link: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-information-for-the-public
Members of the public with queries about coronavirus are asked to visit this site before contacting health providers.