There are still only two patients who have fallen ill with the new virus, separated by a three month interval.
“The fact that there was a long time span between the two cases and that there has been no contact between them suggests that the virus is not contagious. It is not clear whether it is transmitted between humans. Coronavirus is found in both birds and mammals, and one cannot exclude the possibility that this virus has been transmitted from animals to humans”, says Director Karin Rønning in the Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH).
Facts about Coronaviruses:
NIPH is informed that there are hospitalized patients in Denmark with respiratory symptoms. The patients had all been traveling in the same parts of the world. The Danish health authorities inform that these cases were not infected with the new virus.
The Department of Virology at NIPH is preparing a diagnostic testing procedure for the new virus.
Since we are dealing with a newly discovered virus, we do not yet have sufficient knowledge of how contagious the virus is, and who may be at risk.
“At the present time, it is necessary to have a “precautionary approach” and to give some advice”, says Director Karin Rønning.
We therefore advise the following: If you have been traveling to Saudi Arabia or Qatar and developed a fever and cough and/or difficulty breathing within 10 days of your return, you are advised to contact your physician. Make an appointment by phone, and inform the doctor about the condition and where you have been.
“Health professionals who suspect the disease in patients who have been in these particular areas of the world should notify the Officer on duty at the NIPH”, says Rønning.
There are no longer any travel restrictions to Saudi Arabia or Qatar, or when it comes to pilgrims to the Hajj, which takes place from 24th to 29th October.
- Norwegian Institute of Public Health, PO Box 4404 Nydalen, N-0403 Oslo