Coronavirus Outbreak in China

On 31 December 2019, the Government of China reported a cluster of pneumonia cases of unknown cause in Wuhan, Hubei Province. A new coronavirus was eventually identified. As of 26 January 2020, a total of 2014 confirmed cases have been reported globally including 1985 cases from China. Out of the above confirmed cases, 56 people have died in China so far.

 What is the situation in Timor-Leste?

World Health Organisation (WHO) is in regular contact with Member States where cases have been reported. In Timor-Leste, WHO is closely monitoring the situation and providing support to the Ministry of Health in taking the following precautionary measures:

  • Screening of all passengers at border posts for suspected cases
  • Establishing an isolation facility to manage potential suspected case(s)
  • Developing technical/medical Standard Operating Protocols and processes for dealing with suspected cases, if detected
  • Providing refresher training for Point of Entry, ambulance, medical and laboratory staff on screening, management, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) use, infection control, and health promotion
  • Providing support for adequate stockpile of appropriate PPE for medical and other staff handling suspected patients
  • Strengthening laboratory investigation capacities and arrangements at the National Health Laboratory and arrangements with overseas laboratories for case confirmation
  • Offering medical care in case of confirmed cases

 What can people do to stay safe?

The World Health Organization (WHO) advises its following "standard recommendations" focusing on "hand and respiratory hygiene":

  • Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand-rub or soap and water
  • When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or a tissue paper and throw the used tissue paper away immediately and wash hands
  • Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough
  • If you have fever, cough and difficulty in breathing, seek medical care sooner than later and share previous travel history with your health care provider
  • When visiting live markets in areas currently experiencing cases of novel coronavirus, avoid direct unprotected contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals
  • The consumption of raw or undercooked animal products should be avoided. Raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practices.

WHO is closely monitoring the situation and the latest updates are available on its global website. 

WHO advice to countries and individuals on (a) how to identify people sick with the virus, (b) how to care for them, (c) how to prevent spread and (d) how to protect themselves and others, including information on the safe-home care for patients with suspected novel coronavirus infection can be obtained from: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus


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