The confirmed cases of the deadly novel Coronavirus on the Diamond Princess cruise ship off Japanese coast has now reached 135 after 65 more cases were identified on February 10. The local media reports, quoting Japan’s Health Ministry, said that the authorities have identified 65 new cases of the deadly virus.
Officials initially tested 300 people out of the 3,711 onboard and gradually evacuated the infected patients to local medical facilities. Japan has now the most number of Coronavirus-infected patients after China, followed by Singapore and Thailand. The remaining people on the cruise have been asked to stay inside their cabins with their masks on and to keep a distance from each other when out on the open deck.
Japan has decided to conduct tests on all passengers before allowing them to get off the cruise. Earlier, Katsunobu Kato, Health Minister of Japan, had informed the reporters that the government is working to make medication and masks available to those infected on board, particularly for passengers those are showing severe chronic or pneumonia-like symptoms.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has warned that transmission among people with no travel history to China could be the 'tip of the iceberg'. WHO and the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) signed a memorandum of understanding to formalise a strategic collaboration to strengthen diagnosis in resource-poor countries by closing major diagnostic gaps at the country level.
Global health challenges such as the ongoing new #2019nCoV outbreak demonstrates that without these essential elements of health systems, we cannot hope to promote health, keep the world safe, and serve the vulnerable. https://t.co/L81fK8hSZ9— Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (@DrTedros) February 10, 2020
WHO is also convening a global research and innovation forum to mobilise international action in response to the new coronavirus. The forum will be held on February 11-12 in Geneva which is being organised in collaboration with the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness.
“WHO is playing an important coordinating role by bringing the scientific community together to identify research priorities and accelerate progress,” said Ghebreyesus in a statement.
(With Agency Inputs)