Travelers sit with their luggage outside the closed Hankou Railway Station in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei Province, Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020. Overnight, Wuhan authorities announced that the airport and train stations would be closed, and all public transportation suspended by 10 a.m. Friday. Unless they had a special reason, the government said, residents should not leave Wuhan, the sprawling central Chinese city of 11 million that’s the epicenter of an epidemic that has infected nearly 600 people. (Chinatopix via AP)

Canada prepares as WHO decides whether to declare global coronavirus emergency

The city of Wuhan, China, has shut down outbound flights and trains

Canadian public health agencies are ramping up preparations to deal with the coronavirus as the World Health Organization prepares to give more information on whether to declare the outbreak in China a global health emergency.

The organization’s expert committee is to continue its meeting for a second day today.

The city of Wuhan, China, has shut down outbound flights and trains as the country battles the spread of the new virus that has sickened hundreds of people and killed 17.

An official state-run news agency says the city has also asked people not to leave without specific reasons.

There have been no cases reported in Canada, but public health officials say they would not be surprised if the virus does make its way here — or already has.

Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s chief medical officer of health, says the virus comes from the same family that can lead to the common cold, and caused the outbreak of SARS about 17 years ago that killed at least 774 people worldwide, including 44 in Canada.

READ MORE: Canadian public health agencies ramping up preparations in response to new virus

READ MORE: U.S. officials confirm first case of Wuhan coronavirus near Seattle

The Canadian Press


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