MEDICAL DECLARATION REQUIRED FOR PEOPLE COMING FROM IRAN AND ITALY
The Health Ministry said on February 29 that it has sent a dispatch to People’s Committees of cities and provinces informing them on the requirement for medical declaration for travelers coming from or travelling through Iran and Italy. They must fill medical declarations at all border gates, starting from 0am on February 29.
Units concerned were asked to arrange interpreters major in Iranian and Italian languages at border gates to serve the work.
WHO RAISES CORONAVIRUS THREAT ASSESSMENT TO ITS HIGHEST LEVEL
On February 28, the World Health Organization (WHO) has increased its global risk assessment of the novel coronavirus to its highest level after the epidemic spread to at least 60 countries in a matter of weeks.
"Our epidemiologists have been monitoring these developments continuously, and we have now increased our assessment of the risk of spread and the risk of impact of Covid-19 to very high at a global level," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus explained during a press conference.
While the virus has not turned into a pandemic yet, WHO stresses that SARS-nCoV-2 can be controlled by appropriate measures and coordination of the global community.
SOUTH KOREA REPORTED A VIETNAMESE CASE OF CORONAVIRUS
The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) reported to the Vietnamese Embassy in South Korea a Vietnamese case of coronavirus in Daegu city, one of the two epicenters in Korea. According to the International Health Regulations (IHR), KCDC has sent this patient information to the Ministry of Health of Vietnam.
Immediately after receiving the news, the Vietnamese Embassy in South Korea asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Korea, relevant Korean agencies and localities to create favorable conditions and actively treat the Vietnamese patient.
The South Korean government also said it would provide free treatment to Vietnamese patient in the country during the epidemic.
SOUTH KOREA REPORTED THE FIRST CASE OF REINFECTION
On February 29, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) announced that a 73-year-old woman who tested positive for a second time after her recovery and release from hospital last week.
The woman, who was diagnosed with the virus earlier in the month, was released from hospital on February 22 after making a full recovery. She started showed symptoms again on February 26 and was found to have contracted the illness again on the next day. This is the first time in South Korea that a person has been infected a second time with Covid-19 after being discharged.
CHINA USES RECOVERED COVID-19 PATIENTS’ PLASMA FOR TREATMENT
A spokesman for China's National Health Commission said that doctors in China were using infusions of blood plasma from people who have recovered from the coronavirus to treat those still battling the infection. There are 245 patients currently receiving the convalescent plasma therapy.
Several studies and clinical practice have demonstrated that the patient's plasma use for treatment is relatively good. According to the 24-hour monitoring results conducted over 48 hours for a group of 157 patients, using the plasma from recovered Covid-19 patients, the experts found that 91 cases have shown improvement after 2 days.
A top emergency expert at the World Health Organization (WHO) said later that using convalescent plasma was a "very valid" approach to test, but that it was important to get the timing right to maximize the boost to a patient's immunity.
First death from coronavirus in the US
The first death due to the virus in the US was in the suburb of Seattle, Washington. The man who died was in his 50s, had underlying health conditions and no history of travel or contact with a known Covid-19 case, health officials in Washington state said. President Trump then held a news conference to urge Americans not to panic.
Health officials in California, Oregon and Washington state are worried about the novel coronavirus spreading through West Coast communities because a growing number of people are being infected despite not having visited an area where there was an outbreak. Washington has been concerned of a mass outbreak, as more than 50 people in a nursing facility are sick and being tested for the virus.
1,000 TOURISTS ON A SPANISH ISLAND ARE QUARANTINED
A Italian tourist on the Spanish island of Tenerife, the largest of the eight Canary Islands, tested positive to a preliminary test for the coronavirus and has been isolated, according to Spanish health authorities.
The 1,000 people staying in the same hotel as him have since been put in a mandatory quarantine. They are stuck in the four-star Hotel H10 Costa Adeje Palace, not far from the Atlantic Ocean. A spokesperson for the H10 hotel said that it "implemented all health and operational recommendations from the health authorities to ensure the safety and well-being of customers and employees."
GENEVA MOTOR SHOW CANCELED BECAUSE OF CORONAVIRUS FEARS
On February 29, Switzerland announced it was canceling the Geneva Motor Show, one of the world’s largest automotive events. The organizers have notified participants that the event would not go ahead as planned.
Earlier, the Swiss government had banned large events of more than 1,000 people as a measure to help combat the spread of coronavirus. The ban comes into immediate effect and will apply at least until 15 March. Geneva Motor Show 2019 is also the one where Vietnamese automaker Vinfast announced their Lux SA model.
THE FACEMASK THAT COULD SPOT THE CORONAVIRUS
The researchers at the University of Leicester (England) designed 3D printed strips of polyvinyl alcohol that are inserted into the mask. The sampling masks can trap exhaled microbes in a 30-minute period and then be tested in a laboratory.
The pioneering masks allow testing of multiple people at the same time, helping to limit the spread of viruses and suspects who do not have to wait long in isolation. If it is successful, the new method can simplify the large-scale virus detection.
Earlier, the team successfully tested the masks on tuberculosis patients. The masks will be tested on patients with other lung infections and the results from their mask tests will be compared to those from throat swabs, which are known to be accurate. If the new gadgets work, researchers will test the masks on actual Covid-19 patients. If the masks were manufactured on an industrial scale, it would cut costs down to just pennies.