Latest News:  
Beijing   Cloudy    26 / 18 ℃  City Forecast

English>>Life & Culture

Health authorities on alert for new SARS-like virus

By Li Qian (Shanghai Daily)

10:58, October 09, 2012

China's Ministry of Health is urging medical authorities across the nation to be on the lookout for signs of a deadly SARS-like virus which has been detected in Britain and Saudi Arabia.

No cases have been reported on the Chinese mainland so far, China National Radio reported yesterday.

However, in Hong Kong, there were fears that a four-year-old Saudi Arabian boy had been infected with the virus, known as a novel coronavirus.

The boy arrived in Hong Kong from Saudi Arabia last Wednesday with his father.

On Sunday, he showed symptoms of severe respiratory illness, including fever, cough and vomiting, and was transferred to Queen Mary Hospital.

Yesterday, the city's Center for Health Protection said tests showed he had H1N1 flu. He tested negative for the novel coronavirus.

The boy has upper respiratory tract symptoms but there was no evidence of pneumonia and he was currently in a stable condition, a center spokesman said.

The new virus comes from the same family as SARS which emerged in China in late 2002 and killed around a tenth of the 8,000 people it infected worldwide.

Late last month, the World Health Organization said that the novel coronavirus had left a Qatari citizen in a critical condition in a London hospital and had caused the death of a man in Saudi Arabia.

The Hong Kong center is suggesting that anyone coming from countries affected by the novel coronavirus and who show respiratory symptoms should wear a mask, seek medical attention and reveal their travel history to a doctor.

China's health ministry has ordered authorities to strengthen medical inspections on travelers from Britain, Saudi Arabia and Qatar and to report suspected cases to the ministry immediately.

China's quarantine authority is also requiring travelers from affected countries to inform China's entry-exit inspection and quarantine institutions if they develop acute respiratory symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath.

It remains unknown whether this potentially fatal virus will cause another outbreak or if it will disappear into nothing, said Wang Shiwen, an official with the China Center of Disease Control and Prevention.

In a statement, the WHO said: "From the information available thus far, it appears that the novel coronavirus cannot be easily transmitted from person to person."

Coronaviruses are typically spread in the air but scientists were considering the possibility that patients could be infected directly by animals, said Gregory Hartl, a WHO spokesman.

No new confirmed cases of infection have been reported, the WHO said.

In Shanghai, health authorities said no special measures were being taken at present.

News we recommend




Top 10 nude models in China

Tips for Cold Dews [Special]

Flowers blooms on Tian'anmen Square

Exploring hiding place of 'The Orphan of Zhao'

Peking Opera: What course to follow ?

Tips for your autumn break[Special]


Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. Guangzhou MAC organizes air-defense actual-combat exercise

  2. The world in photos (2012.10.01-10.07)

  3. Commentary:Asking the right questions

  4. Forest park scenery in Jiuquan City, Gansu

  5. Human Slaughterhouse

  6. Elena Gomez in the pages of Maxim

Most Popular


  1. Chavez expected to boost China links
  2. Can US ‘enjoy the downward slide?’
  3. Stability achieved; now, efficiency
  4. Commentary: Unraveling the value mystique
  5. Commentary: Pricing strategies for success
  6. 'Economic war' with Japan unwise
  7. An end to the era of double-digit growth
  8. Human resources need more investment
  9. Japan should know facts rather than rhetoric prevail
  10. Be vigilant against resurgence of militarism in Japan

What's happening in China

China's first aircraft carrier celebrates National Day

  1. Forced landing in NW China after terrorist warning
  2. New traffic rules highlight school bus safety
  3. ZTE denies U.S. security threat accusation
  4. Death toll climbs to 12 in C. China ship collision
  5. Health authorities on alert for new SARS-like virus

China Features

  1. Culture invasion? Starbucks kisses Buddha
  2. Public should enjoy more 'tourism benefits'
  3. Ancient villages face losing their souls
  4. Economic circles key to Sino-Japan relations
  5. How to pan for gold in cultural investment fever

PD Online Data

  1. Ministry of Water Resources
  2. Ministry of Railways
  3. People's Bank of China
  4. Ministry of Health
  5. Ministry of Culture