WATCH | Health department says measures to stop coronavirus are being put in place
An obscure virus in another part of the world, or an impending global outbreak that could hit SA?
This is the question in everyone’s minds as coronavirus quickly becomes a household name after an increasing number of deaths are reported from China in the city of Wuhan, and other non-fatal cases are reported internationally.
The coronavirus outbreak in China has become a global cause for concern, with cases reported in Australia and France.
In January, Chinese officials reported the outbreak of coronavirus, which was discovered in the central Chinese city of Wuhan. Experts initially said they didn't know how easily the virus could spread or where it originated.
The department of health released a statement calling on South Africans not to panic, and said preventive measures were being put in place.
The department said port health officials routinely conduct temperature screening for all international travellers, and it was fortunate that OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg and Cape Town International Airport are the only ports of entry with direct flights from Asia.
In response to the coronavirus outbreak, SA has developed and distributed clinical guidelines and case definitions to doctors and nurses in both the public and private sectors.