The coronavirus is a large family of viruses that causes illnesses ranging from the common cold to acute respiratory syndromes, but the virus that has killed people in China is a novel strain and was not seen before.
Two persons, who were admitted to a civic hospital in Mumbai for possible exposure to novel coronavirus, have tested negative for the infection, while the blood sample of another person will be sent for testing to the National Institute of Virology (NIV) in Pune on Saturday, officials said.
The two persons, who tested negative, will continue to be kept under observation at the isolation ward of the Kasturba Hospital of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), and decision about their discharge will be taken on Saturday, officials said.
“The two persons who tested negative are still under watch. Decision on discharging them will be taken on Saturday. It depends on their health condition. The blood sample of the third individual will be sent to the NIV on Saturday and the report is expected later in the day or on Sunday,” a state health department official said. The two persons, who tested negative, had travelled to China. They were admitted to the hospital on January 23. The third person, who returned from Hong Kong, was admitted on Friday.
According to officials, a total of 2,056 passengers underwent thermal screening at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport here for the coronavirus till Friday night since January 19. Seven of these screened passengers were from Maharashtra.
Coronavirus cases were first reported from Wuhan, the capital of central Chinas Hubei province and few cases have been found in other countries including South Korea, Japan, Thailand and the United States.
The coronavirus is a large family of viruses that causes illnesses ranging from the common cold to acute respiratory syndromes, but the virus that has killed people in China is a novel strain and was not seen before. Common symptoms of the infection include fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties, according to the World Health Organisation.
Authorities would be following up with every passenger who has returned from any of the countries where outbreak of coronavirus has been reported for the next 28 days to check if she or he has developed symptoms of the infection. Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope had on Friday urged citizens not to panic as no case of coronavirus infection has been found in the country so far.