82 people are dead and more than 2,700 cases have been confirmed in mainland China, as the Wuhan coronavirus continues to spread throughout Asia and the rest of the world. Nearly 60 million people have been affected by partial or full lockdowns in Chinese cities as the country’s government steps up its response.
Shanghai’s government said on Sunday (Jan 26) it was suspending all long-distance bus services into or out of the city, as the authorities scramble to contain a deadly new virus that has spread across the country. The measure announced by the financial hub’s transportation commission goes into effect immediately followed a similar move made by the capital Beijing. The cities of Tianjin and Xi’an as well as Hebei province in the north, along with the eastern Shandong province, has also imposed such measures.
Shandong province, with a population of 100 million people, said inter-city buses in the province will only be allowed to leave if stations have temperature screening measures.
A senior Sri Lankan health official confirmed the first case of coronavirus in the country. Although most cases identified remain in China, more than a dozen other countries have so far reported cases.
There is no vaccine, treatment or commercially available product to even test for the virus. The US Food and Drug Administration is working with other government agencies to encourage the development of medical products that may diagnose, treat or fight the virus.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention raised its travel precautions for China on Monday to its highest of three levels: “Warning.”This means travelers are advised to “avoid nonessential travel” to the country.
The US State Department has ordered personnel working at the US Consulate General in Wuhan to depart for the United States, a State Department official told CNN in a statement. Priority has been given to US citizens who are “most at risk for contracting coronavirus” if they stay in city, the statement read. “The Department of State procured a chartered flight for U.S. government personnel in Wuhan. As space is available, seating will be offered to U.S. citizens on a reimbursable basis to leave from Wuhan Tianhe International Airport to Ontario, California, on the morning of Wednesday, January 29, 2020 China Standard Time,” the statement read.
All passengers will be subject to a CDC screening, health observation and monitoring requirements.