The World Health Organization’s (WHO) emergency committee is set to reconvene behind closed doors in Geneva today (Thursday) to decide whether the rapid spread of coronavirus now constitutes a global emergency.
While the numbers outside China remain relatively small, WHO says they hold the potential for a much larger outbreak.
Thirty-eight more coronavirus patients in China died Wednesday, pushing the death toll there to 170.
In Canada, there are three confirmed cases – two in Ontario and one in British Columbia. Twenty-three cases in Ontario are under review.
Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, says government and public health authorities should plan on having to manage the outbreak for some time to come.
It’s now believed person-person contact in China began as early as mid-December.
Chinese researchers say more than half of the cases in which symptoms began before January 1 were tied to a seafood market, but only eight per cent of cases after that have been.