27/02/2020

Coronavirus: No Confirmed Cases As 52 People Tested

Some 52 people have now been tested for coronavirus in Northern Ireland, the Public Health Agency has said.

While the number of tests carried out is on the rise there remains no confirmed cases of the disease in Northern Ireland.

Elsewhere, two further patients have tested positive in England following travels to Italy and Tenerife, where the virus has took hold in recent days. This brings the total number of UK cases to 15.

Health Minister Robin Swann issued an update to the NI Assembly on Wednesday. He said services are prepared to deal with any emerging cases as officials remain focused on containing the outbreak.

"It is important that we remain calm and focused on containment at this point. The risk to individuals in the UK has not changed at this stage but we should continue to plan and be ready for all eventualities," the Ulster Unionist MLA said.
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Tried and tested infection control procedures are being implemented, with the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast bracing itself to admit any patients confirmed to have contracted Covid-19.

Patients under 16 years of age will be admitted to the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.

"As Members will appreciate, this is a rapidly changing situation," the Minister added.

"In light of developments internationally the case definition was changed on 25th February with travel advice issued for people returning from countries and regions including Iran, South Korea and northern Italy."

The PHA has issued advice for those who travelled to quarantined countries in recent weeks. This can be accessed online.

Meanwhile, anyone concerned about their health who feels they are developing sinister symptoms such as a cough, fever, or difficulty breathing is urged to contact their GP or local Emergency Department by phone before attending.



(JG/CM)

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