Lancaster University offers coronavirus advice to staff and students

Lancaster University has offered advice to its students and staff following the outbreak of the coronavirus in China.

Friday, 24th January 2020, 10:13 am
Updated Friday, 24th January 2020, 10:16 am
BEIJING, CHINA - JANUARY 22: A Chinese couple wearing their protective masks kiss before saying goodbye to catch a train at Beijing Station before the annual Spring Festival on January 22, 2020 in Beijing, China. The number of cases of a deadly new coronavirus rose to over 400 in mainland China Wednesday as health officials stepped up efforts to contain the spread of the pneumonia-like disease which medicals experts confirmed can be passed from human to human. The number of those who have died from the virus in China climbed to nine on Wednesday and cases have been reported in other countries including the United States,Thailand, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

The university, which has around 2,300 Chinese students on campus, said it is continuing to monitor the global situation and would issue further advice to students and staff when it becomes available.

The BBC reported that there have been 830 confirmed cases of the virus, which has flu like symptons, across China, with 26 known to have died.

There are currently travel restrictions in place in Hubei province, affecting at least 20 million people across 10 cities, including the capital Wuhan, where the virus emerged.

The virus has spread across China and to countries as far as Japan, Thailand and the US.

No cases have been reported in the UK.

Coronaviruses are types of viruses that typically affect the respiratory tract of mammals, including humans. They are associated with the common cold, pneumonia, and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and can also affect the gut.

A spokeswoman for Lancaster University said: “Lancaster University is continuing to monitor the global situation with the Coronavirus and will issue further advice to students and staff as it becomes available from the World Health Organisation, Public Health England and other organisations.

“As it is the cold and flu season general advice to students has been to follow the public health guidance and good levels of personal hygiene.

“We have around 2300 Chinese students on campus, and there are about 120,385 Chinese students studying at universities in the UK.”

Public Health England has also offered advice.

It said: “UK public health measures are world leading and our excellent NHS is well prepared to manage and treat new diseases.

“We have been carefully monitoring the situation in Wuhan for some time and are ready to put in place proportionate, precautionary measures.

“From today, 22 January 2020, enhanced monitoring will be in place from all direct flights from Wuhan to the UK. The enhanced monitoring package includes a number of measures that will help to provide advice to travellers if they feel unwell.

“For those travelling back directly from Wuhan, this includes a Port Health team who will meet each direct flight aircraft to provide advice and support to those that feel unwell. The team will include the Principal Port Medical Inspector, Port Health Doctor, Administrative Support, and Team Leader.

“They will check for symptoms of coronavirus and provide information to all passengers about symptoms and what to do if they become ill. Mandarin and Cantonese language support will be available to Public Health England (PHE) and leaflets will be available to passengers.”